Payne County recycles old bridge

Tuesday, March 25th 2008, 6:52 pm
By: News 9

By Charles Bassett, NEWS 9

Stillwater, Okla. -- Measuring 140 feet long and weighing 254 tons, an Oklahoma bridge is on the move.

After being replaced with a concrete bridge, the huge truss bridge that once welcomed people into Stillwater is making an 11-mile trek to a new resting spot.

Payne County Commissioner Bill Deering said the truss bridge will replace a bridge on the east side of Stillwater that's in disrepair.

"If I would have waited on the federal government to rebuild that bridge, it would be on the plan for five years before we even got to the building part," Deering said.

The county estimates a new bridge would have cost taxpayers about half a million dollars, but recycling this one will only cost about $200,000.

"This is the cheap, easy and a very good way out, this is heaven sent," Deering said.

Crews spent most of Tuesday morning prepping the bridge and getting it ready for the transfer.

The bridge is actually too big to be moved all at once, so welders are cutting off the top half of the bridge so it can be moved in two pieces.

After several hours, the top of the bridge was lifted away and lowered on to a truck. Workers secured it in place and it was moved to its new location.

The county hopes to have the new old bridge open for traffic in about three months.