Bridge caisson equipment put to work on 8th Street

       The project to relieve vehicle and foot traffic on Eighth Street south of Highway 24 became especially visible this week with the arrival of tall machines to create abutments for a 120-foot pedestrian bridge over Fountain Creek.

Workers with CMS, the project contractor, position the Lego-style concrete blocks (which weigh nearly a ton apiece, as work starts on the retaining wall paralleling Eighth Street next to the parking lot for the hotel southeast of Highway 24 and Eighth Street. Note: This photo was shot about a week earlier than the picture on Page 1.
Westside Pioneer photo

       The equipment has been drilling holes around 40 feet deep (as needed to get 8 feet into bedrock) at the bridge corners, then pouring their concrete caissons, explained Colleen Dawson, the city engineer for the project.
       The multi-faceted project by the CMS construction company is simultaneously building a retaining wall - large white bricks that look like Legos - along the east side of Eighth that will eventually reach street level and be capped to serve as a sidewalk. (There currently is none on that side of the street between Fountain Creek and the highway.)
       This economy of space will in turn make possible a 150-foot extension of Eighth Street's right-turn-only lane for northbound motorists, which sometimes gets backed up because of highway traffic, Dawson said. But during the work, the rightmost northbound lane south of Fountain Creek has been blocked off for several hundred feet.
       The project is funded with a $158,000 federal safety grant and the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority, which has allocated up to $150,000 in traffic-safety funds.
       Once the bridge abutments and retaining wall are in place, the project will wrap up with the bridge installation and the street work. Completion is anticipated around Oct. 1.

Westside Pioneer article