Hwy. 4 bridge replacement will take most of a year

News Staff Report

Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) crews are working to replace the bridge on Florida Highway 4 that spans Canoe Creek (about halfway between Byrneville and Bratt), a project that is expected to take most of a year to complete.
FDOT officials announced that a 330-day detour that began Monday, July 10, will be in effect from Highway 4 to Bratt Road’s eastern end (closer to Century), to Pine Barren Road and back to Highway 4 near Northview High School.
A 4.14-mile stretch of Highway 4 is closed, and the detour will cover 5.67 miles.
A smaller Highway 4 bridge, located east of the Canoe Creek bridge, will not be replaced at this time.
Escambia County (Fla.) officials said the road closure will serve to reduce construction time and costs, to minimize rights-of-way purchases or construction easements, and will minimize the impact of the project on area wetlands.
The bridge, which was built in 1942, has wooden supports, some of which were later reinforced with steel when they began to show signs of failing.
The budgeted cost of replacing the 225-foot creek span is $3.8 million. The structure, like the road over which it stretches, is owned by Escambia County, but the replacement will be done under a locally funded agreement with FDOT, officials said.