With infrastructure needing repairs throughout the county, members of the Harlan Fiscal Court searched for ways to repair and construct bridges at a recent meeting.
Magistrate Bill Moore requested repairs be made to Ledford Bridge, at Dizney. He said the county is” not equipped to fix this bridge because of manpower and equipment needed to complete the job.” He estimated the cost to make the repairs at $25,000.
Magistrate Jim Roddy added he has a bridge in his district, located at Slack Holler in Crummies, which for the past two years “every time it rains he’s up there at 2 a.m. or 3 a.m. trying to fix it.”
“There’s a trailer near the bridge and every time it rains the water gets up almost into their home and the residents can’t get out,” said Roddy.
Harlan County Road Department Supervisor Marvin Goins said he had looked at several options to remedy this situation.
“Rather than going with a bridge, we could use a bypass tile system,” said Goins. “We’re talking about putting a 36-inch tile off to the side of the bridge area and putting it a little above the one that is already there so when the water gets up it will bleed off.”
Roddy said this would be “a Bandaid fix.” He said there needs to be a bridge built for the residents in that area.
“I know we can’t afford to do it right now,” said Roddy. “I’ve been trying to come up with something for the past six months. The estimated cost for a new bridge will be over $20,000.”
Goins said the bridge is “highly traveled.”
Harlan County Engineer Leo Miller said one estimate was that the work could be done over a weekend to help residents in the area.
Goins responded by saying it will take him “more than a weekend to do the work needed.”
“We can tear the bridge out completely, set two pieces of steel in and put (concrete) slabs on it,” said Goins. “I don’t know if the slabs would support the traffic. I could build one to support car traffic with no problem.”
Harlan County Judge-Executive Joe Grieshop said this bridge will have to support 90 tons and this will drive up the costs along with having to do the work on a weekend.
Roddy told Grieshop he has steel beams, which were donated, he could use in the construction of the bridge.
Saying only $45,000 is left in the budget to help with these costs, Harlan County Treasurer Ryan Creech added the county originally budgeted $350,000 for this type of work and they are already $54,000 above that amount. Creech continued saying with the recent flooding in the county, funds from the asphalt budget will have to be used to make repairs to roads throughout the county.
Members of the court approved advertising for bids for the construction of both these bridges.
Also approved was a request for permission from Micah Group, of Lexington, to perform site investigation activities, as directed by the Kentucky Department for Environmental Protection Underground Storage Tank Branch, on property where the former Direct Fuels Service Station was located on KY 840. An analysis conducted indicated the presence of BTEX constituents above screening levels within the point of compliance. These approved activities will include monitoring well installation, along with soil and groundwater sampling in the area.
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