As longtime residents of Treasure Island, we frequently use Park Street and Ninth Avenue N to reach destinations to the north and east. Having survived the lengthy, expensive and futile attempt to remove, grade and replace the brick portion of this street, hoping for a less bumpy ride, we are now mystified by the project adjacent to Admiral Farragut Academy.
When the replacement of the small bridge over a small drainage canal began, we thought it would be a relatively easy project that would be done in a reasonable amount of time. Instead, this has become a major event lasting for months, involving huge cranes, earth movers, cement trucks, traffic diversion, and scores of workmen and women. Was this a city, county or state project? Any estimate of cost or of final completion? These two projects alone must rival the cost of some segments of Interstate 275 through St. Petersburg.
Millie & Julian Fant
As the Doc first reported last July, the replacement of the small bridge on Park Street across from Admiral Farragut Academy is a Pinellas County project. A pair of box culverts will replace the aging bridge, which will improve drainage in the area, according to Brian Mowry, the project coordinator.
In order to avoid closing Park Street to traffic between Fifth and Ninth Avenues N, work is being done in two phases. Phase one — the west side of Park Street, is complete. The work currently in progress on the east side of Park Street near Admiral Farragut Academy is phase two.
The project, which includes the installation of new sidewalks and curbs, began in June 2013 and was projected to be completed next month. The Doc checked in on the progress last week and learned that the new completion date is sometime in July. The cost of the project is a little over $1 million.
I've noticed cracks on the east side of the new Pinellas Bayway Bridge at the junction of road and bridge. What's going on?
We checked in with the state Department of Transportation, and according to spokeswoman Kris Carson, the cracks, which started last year, are nothing to be concerned about.
Carson says the cracks occurred during construction of the front wall under the bridge on the east end. The wall was built on top of the piling driven into the ground and supports the beams on that end of the bridge. The side wall where the cracking has occurred was constructed on a large concrete footer foundation, which allows for settlement.
"To fix the (cracking) problem, the large rebar dowels were cut so no further issues would occur. The wall was monitored and surveyed constantly to make sure the settlement had reached its maximum point prior to any repairs being approved," Carson said. Repairs to the cracked wall began a few weeks ago and should be complete soon.
Look for Dr. Delay in the new St. Pete Times section beginning Friday. Until then, happy and safe motoring!
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