It could be a couple of more years, at least, before the Sullivan Road southbound bridge is replaced.
However, that doesn’t mean city of Spokane Valley officials aren’t thinking forward.
On Tuesday night, the City Council unanimously approved a contract with CH2M HILL in an amount not to exceed $75,000 to immediately begin surveying and topographical mapping of the westernmost bridge over the Spokane River at Sullivan.
Time, according to Steve Worley, city senior capital projects engineer, is of the essence.
“We need to get started on the survey work before the snow flies this winter,” Worley said.
The city has applied for a federal TIGER III grant of up to $10 million for the eventual replacement of the bridge. In order to meet the tight timeframe to receive the grant – the city would have to be ready to begin work on the bridge in June 2013 – preliminary survey work as part of the initial design phase must be done now and cannot wait until spring, Worley said.
Meanwhile, the city is already moving ahead with temporary fixes in order to lift weight restrictions imposed earlier this year on the 60-year-old southbound Sullivan Road Bridge. At best, those repairs – estimated to be at least $358,000 – won’t be completed and the weight restrictions lifted until next spring or early summer.
The weight limits were imposed in June of this year after an annual inspection showed signs of deterioration on the bridge. While not at risk of collapse, the restrictions help extend the life of the structure until the city can secure funding to replace the bridge.
Already the city has secured about half of the estimated $19.7 million required for a full replacement of the bridge. The funding has been secured from federal sources distributed through the Washington State Department of Transportation and from the state Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board.
The east bridge is newer and will not be affected by the work.
In other news, the council agreed to approve the 2012 docket of comprehensive plan amendments. Under state law, changes to the comp plan can only be made once a year.
Of the amendments under consideration, which will get final approval in the spring, five have been initiated by city staff and seven by private property owners.