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Texas Road Pedestrian Bridge

Project

Repairs and conversion of Texas Road Bridge from a vehicular bridge to a pedestrian bridge

 

History

The Town of Montreat closed the Texas Road Bridge #528 to vehicular traffic in 2008 and began replacement plans when an engineering inspection report revealed widespread timber decay. The Town determined that replacing the bridge in the same location would require raising the new structure between five to seven feet in order to avoid construction within the floodway and surrounding non-encroachment areas and any rise in flood elevation.

In 2010, the Town applied for and was accepted into the Municipal Bridge Program, a joint venture between the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) and Federal Highway Administration to provide 80% of the bridge's replacement costs through a reimbursement grant.

The Montreat Board of Commissioners considered five potential replacement options, including: Option A (No-Build), Option B (Replace in Place), Option C (New Bridge Construction at Welch Field), Option D (New Bridge Construction at Tennessee Road Alignment), and Option E (New Bridge Construction at Montreat Playing Field). Town staff learned in March, 2013 that historical and archeological studies would be required for replacement Options B, D and E. In June 2013, the North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office (NC SHPO) determined that the bridge was located within an eligible National Historic District, and that replacement Options B, D and E would be considered to have an adverse effect on the area. As a result, NC SHPO required a more detailed historical study and an archaeological dig. These studies were completed in October 2013.

In March, 2014 the Board voted to select Option B to replace in place. Work continued to progress throughout 2014 and 2015.

However, due to increased costs and increased public engagement related to the project, following the election of 2015 the newly installed Town Board of Commissioners passed a resolution suspending the Texas Road Bridge Project. The Board authorized the Mayor to appoint a committee to reconsider the need for, and type of, a bridge and report back to the Board. The Montreat Bridge Committee made their recommendations to the Board in May of 2016, which included the recommendation that the existing Texas Road Bridge be left in place and converted to a pedestrian-only bridge.

In March of 2017 the Board of Commissioners formally voted to pursue the conversion of the existing vehicular bridge into a pedestrian-only bridge. In March of 2018 the Commission appointed a new committee to make aesthetic recommendations for a pedestrian bridge.  In August of 218 the Bridge Aesthetics Committee reported on its recommendations.

In 2019 the Town engaged Mattern & Craig for engineering and design services. The project is divided into two phases: Phase One is the simple conversion of the existing bridge. Phase Two is for a signature architectural design.

 

Timeline

  • 2008 - Texas Road Bridge closed
  • 2010 - Town Entered Municipal Bridge Program
  • 2013 - NCSHPO determined location within an eligible National Historic District
  • 2014 - Board approved 'replace-in-place' plan
  • 2015 - Project suspended
  • 2016 - Bridge Committee issued final report
  • 2017 - Board voted to convert vehicular bridge to a pedestrian bridge; appointed Bridge Aesthetics Committee
  • 2018 - Bridge Aesthetics Committee issued final report and recommendations; formed Friends of Montreat Bridge Committee
  • 2019 - Town engaged Mattern & Craig for Engineering and Design Services
  • 2019/2020 - Proposed construction of Phase One
  • 2020 - Proposed construction of Phase Two

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