County could close bridge on Lloyd Mill

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Residents using the north end Lloyd Mill Road to access Hwy 55 may soon get a new route.

At Tuesday night’s County Commission workshop, county engineer Darren Capps told commissioners he’d like to close the more than a mile strip of road that includes an unsafe bridge over Pigeon Creek.

“It was out. We repaired it, and it’s open to traffic,” Capps said. “There’s a three-ton limit on the bridge.”

Capps said many locals use it to go to a store on Hwy 55.

Capps presented the commission with mileage for the options of new routes.

“The mileage to go to Brooks with the bridge is 1.22 miles,” he said. “Without the bridge, right now, its 8.9 miles.”

Still, Capps proposed a new alignment that would take part of the existing Memorial Road and design a road through the bridge, which would create a path just over a mile.

“That’s a lot better,” he said.

Commissioners asked Capps how much it would cost to repair the bridge.

Capps said it would cost more than $2 million, but anticipated it to cost around $150,000 to complete the paving for the new route.

“We have people wanting their roads to be fixed,” said Chairman Bill Godwin. “We can’t spend that kind of money on a bridge.”

Commissioners agreed they should talk to property owners surrounding the area.

“There won’t be many folk inconvenienced,” said commissioner Joe Barton.

Commissioner Carl Turman, who represents the people in the area, said the bridge is dangerous and many residents do not like to use the bridge.

Capps said he had the bridge inspected by the state emergency officials and it was deemed safe.

If the commission decides to close the bridge, a public hearing will be held to allow the residents of the area to voice their concerns.

“That way they don’t feel that they are having it crammed down their throats,” Barton said.

“If we voted to close it, our options are either the new road through or to use the existing road to Hester Store,” Godwin said.