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Open house April 12 to coincide with start of Chestnut Street bridge replacement project

      
Three days after cracking was first noticed in the Chestnut Street bridge, a sinkhole had caused the pavement to crack open all the way across the street Aug. 13. The lower photo in this story shows how it looked the next day, when the city brought in heavy equipment.
Westside Pioneer file photo
Right around the time that work starts on the Chestnut bridge replacement, the city has scheduled an open house Tuesday, April 12 to explain it.
       The event, free and open to the public, will be at Springs Journey Church, 1250 Vondelpark Drive, from 5 to 7 p.m. “Please join us for an open house to learn about project details, construction timeline and traffic impacts,” reads a postcard that the city sent out to residents and businesses in that area.
       According to a follow-up e-mail to the Westside Pioneer from city project manager Alex Pellegrino, “the contractor anticipates mobilizing to the site the week of April 11,” following “internal pre-construction meetings” the previous week.
       SEMA Construction is also the contractor (with the state of Colorado) on the Fillmore/I-25 interchange.
A day after the photo above, in a shot from about the same vantage point, heavy equipment had dug deep below the pavement, getting down to the failed drainage pipe under the compacted dirt of the Chestnut Street bridge
Westside Pioneer file photo

       The $2.9 million project at Chestnut will replace the compacted-dirt bridge and culvert for Douglas Creek. Also included will be utility reinstallations and realignment of the Sinton Trail under the bridge (inside the culvert).
       Completion has previously been estimated in October.
       The bridge has been closed since August, forcing Chestnut's two lanes of traffic to detour around the bridge area between Ellston Street and Vondelpark Drive, leading to complaints from the Holland Park neighborhood about excess, speeding traffic.
       The closure culprit was the metal pipe that formerly carried the creek's water flow under the bridge. When it failed Aug. 10, a sinkhole formed in the dirt and within three days had cracked open the pavement from one side to the other.
       Replacement-project funding is coming from the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority (RTA). The project is an A-list item, but city engineers had expected the pipe to last at least until 2019. They have since said the problem was made worse by the heavy rains last spring.
       The effect was that detailed planning for the bridge replacement started almost from scratch. A city public meeting last fall presented options; the design later selected by the city reflected an effort to keep costs down (keeping the compacted-dirt design rather than an open-air span) as well as public wishes for a culvert that would not be too small and dark for trail users.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 3/31/16; Transportation: (Major Roads)

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