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Future of Beckett Bridge is up in the air | News

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Future of Beckett Bridge is up in the air
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Tarpon Springs, Florida -- After almost 90 years, Beckett Bridge over Whitcomb Bayou has nearly outlasted its usefulness.  The county is considering options to repair it or do away with it entirely.

At Tuesday night's regular board hearing, city commissioners will hear from Pinellas County officials on potential plans for the drawbridge.

Beckett Bridge was built in 1924 as a wooden bridge, and rebuilt with concrete in 1956.  It underwent major repairs in 1979, 1998 and 2001.  But now the bridge is considered "functionally obsolete" because of narrow sidewalks that don't meet ADA requirements and narrow lanes with no room for bike lanes or shoulders.  There are also structural concerns over the bridge's foundations.

The county is considering several options for Beckett Bridge.

  • Replacing bridge with another drawbridge or a fixed span  bridge
  • Rehabilitating the current bridge
  • Demolishing the bridge without replacing it
  • Do nothing

If nothing is done, the bridge will be considered no longer serviceable in 10 years.  Renovating it would extend its life for 25 years.  A replacement bridge would last for at least 75 years.

Tuesday's City Commission hearing will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the City Hall Auditorium.

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