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Lake Cohoon bridge deck to be replaced

A $2.25-million project to replace the bridge deck and superstructure to the 400-foot long, 31-foot wide bridge over the CSX railroad just north of Holland Road is set to begin later this month.

The Department of Public Works said preliminary work on the Lake Cohoon Road bridge would begin in late January, with the road closing in late February. The road is expected to reopen in late December.

Allan Myers Inc. of Glen Allen submitted the winning bid.

The abutments and columns will be restored on the nearly 60-year-old bridge, as they will not need to be replaced, according to the Department of Public Works.

The city will advise the public on road closure dates and detour information and will post signage ahead of the road closure.

According to an April 2020 inspection report, the bridge’s overall condition was rated poor, “structurally deficient” and scheduled for rehabilitation. The bridge has a sufficiency rating of 67.2%. Bridge ratings are determined by the condition of different aspects of a bridge, which are rated from 0 (failed) to 9 (excellent).

VDOT notes that a structurally deficient bridge is one in which the riding surface, the supports directly underneath it or the substructure are rated in a condition of 4 or less.

The Virginia Department of Transportation notes that a structurally deficient bridge does not imply that it is likely to collapse or that it is unsafe, but that it must be “monitored, inspected and maintained.”

The report noted, among other things, hairline map cracks, debris along both shoulders, numerous failing patches throughout the bridge and multiple delaminations, or bridge defects.

The bridge deck also has a steel plate on it that moves when a vehicle drives over it, according to the report, and it has multiple cracks in the concrete.

The wearing surface, expansion joints, bearing devices and structural condition of the bridge were all rated poor, while the substructures of the bridge were mostly rated in fair or good condition.

According to VDOT, an average of 1,465 vehicles travel daily over the bridge.