Big Sandy Creek Bridge scores 45 out of 100 in structure rating
If youâ€™ve taken a drive down Bostwick Highway (also known as Georgia State Route 83) lately, the mass amount of construction equipment and stop-and-go (or stop-and-slow) traffic is no surprise. Coming from Madison, you look to the left as you go over Big Sandy Creek and the reason for all of this becomes clear â€" bridge replacement. The project itself, called BRST-2938(3) Morgan, consists of 0.539 miles worth of construction of a bridge to be built over SR 83, according to Georgia Department of Transportation District Communications Officer Cissy McNure, and it begins and ends 1,400 feet before and after the existing bridge over Big Sandy Creek. Sunbelt Structures, Inc. is the projectâ€™s contractor. â€œThe bridge is being replaced because it is structurally deficient and was rated 45 out of a possible 100,â€� McNure said, in e-mail correspondence. â€œThe Office of Bridge Maintenance has determined that any bridge which is rated less than 50 should be replaced rather than improved. Replacing the bridge will bring it up to current design standards, improving the operation and safety of SR 83.â€�
There is no work planned for the current bridge over Big Sandy Creek. Once construction on the new bridge is complete, the existing bridge will be removed. Construction is estimated to be complete by then end of July 2008. Until then, McNure expects there will be minimal traffic delays. Further, a future project to replace the bridge over Little Sandy Creek on SR 83 is also in the works, McNure said.