A recent LADOTD bridge inspection of the W. 11th Avenue Bridge at Mile Branch in Covington has found critical deficiencies in the substructure. As a result of these findings, DOTD is requiring St. Tammany Parish, which manages the Off-System Bridge Program for the State, to close the bridge to vehicular traffic. St. Tammany Parish advised the City of Covington to close the bridge immediately and take steps to remedy the deficiencies.
The City is complying with the order and will place barricades and appropriate signs to notify the public of the closure and recommended detour routes. This will be done Thursday, March 30th. The City is moving forward with design work so that a contractor may be hired as quickly as possible to make all needed repairs. Additionally, the City has requested design engineers to investigate the possibility of making rapid repairs to allow for the partial re-opening of the bridge to passenger vehicles (under 5 tons) within weeks. Full repairs to allow for heavy vehicles such as school buses and garbage trucks could be performed at a later date with a planned and advertised closure period. That construction time would be dependent on the final scope of work defined.
LADOTD inspects this bridge and several other bridges in Covington on a two-year cycle as part of the LADOTD Off-System Bridge Program. The bridges are also inspected on a yearly basis by St. Tammany Parish as part of the program requirements.
“We are thankful for the regular inspections of our local bridges by the State and Parish so that deficiencies may be detected to avoid possible vehicle damage or personal injury. We know the public will be inconvenienced while this busy roadway is closed and ask that our citizens plan for alternate routes when traveling in this area,” – Mayor Mike Cooper. Visit covla.com for City of Covington news.