Work is scheduled to begin Monday, July 6, on a N.C. Department of Transportation project to replace the bridge on Forestville Road that spans Smith Creek. A message board announcing the closure has been erected on site.
The project is part of the NCDOT’s State-Funded Bridge Improvement Program to improve the overall condition of the state’s bridges. The department is investing $810 million over four years to strategically perform preservation or rehabilitation work when possible.
The Forestville Road Bridge is considered structurally deficient and functionally obsolete, which means that although the structure remains safe to use, it has required constant repairs and should be replaced. In addition, the bridge was built to design standards that are no longer in use.
NCDOT will replace the existing structure with a three-lane bridge that includes a sidewalk on the Heritage High School or western side of the structure, as well as a pedestrian underpass to accommodate users wishing to access the Smith Creek and Sanford Creek Greenways.
The closure, which is expected to last until December 2015, will send the motorists who use the bridge onto a signed detour route using Rogers Road, South Main Street and Burlington Mills Road.
Police Chief Jeff Leonard says his department has fielded numerous calls from area residents with concerns about the project.
“There is no easy solution,” said Leonard. “Unfortunately, a lot of people are going to be inconvenienced. Still, we’re all in this together. If you live in that area or travel through that area, the best thing you can do is allow yourself extra time and be aware of the assigned detour.
“Our officers will monitor the situation and provide assistance if needed” he added, “but we can all help one another by planning ahead and giving ourselves extra time.”
For more information about the Forestville Road Bridge Replacement Project, including a downloadable detour map, visit www.wakeforestnc.gov/forestville-road-bridge-replacement.aspx .
In other bridge replacement news, construction on the Purnell Road Bridge has been completed.
To help keep area drivers informed about the four bridge replacement initiatives scheduled in our area, the Town of Wake Forest has created a bridge replacement projects portal on its website called “Operation Bridge Exchange” or OBE. Located at www.wakeforestnc.gov/operation-bridge-exchange.aspx , the OBE website is designed to connect area residents with comprehensive information about the bridge replacements scheduled along Purnell Road, West Oak Avenue, Forestville Road and Rogers Road, including timelines, project maps and detours. It also includes fact sheets about each project, as well as an interactive map highlighting each project location.
By providing detailed information in one convenient location, the town aims to help reduce the impact of these projects on those who live in and travel through the affected areas.
For more information about these bridge replacement projects, visit www.wakeforestnc.gov/operation-bridge-exchange.aspx or contact Transportation Planning Manager Candace Davis at 919-435-9513 or email@example.com or NCDOT Division 5 Resident Engineer Chad Hinnant at 919-733-9499 or firstname.lastname@example.org .