GREENVILLE, Mo. -- After 70 years, the original U.S. 67 bridge south of Greenville is coming down.
Demolition is expected to finish in late January. The structure has been closed since a new four-lane bridge opened in August 2010.
"Right now, workers are taking the concrete deck off the bridge and that's half done," explained Missouri Department of Transportation resident engineer Audie Pulliam. "Then they will take down the steel superstructure."
Nearly 860,000 pounds of structural steel will be removed from bridge and more than 1,800 cubic yards of reinforced concrete.
Robertson Contractors of Poplar Bluff, Mo., which is removing the bridge, will recycle, sell, reuse or scrap the steel, Pulliam said. The concrete will be taken to an off-site disposal facility.
Work at the closed bridge began in late November and is on schedule, according to Pulliam.
Pulliam said the contractor is responsible for managing boat traffic on Wappapello Lake near the bridge work, and will have to close the area at times during the project.
While small sections of steel are removed by a crane, the large main span will be dropped into the lake. Explosives will be used to break up the concrete piers.
All debris will be removed from the lake, Pulliam said, and contractors are working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to satisfy environmental regulations.