With a little cooperation from the weather, permanent bridge repairs on Plymouth Road will be completed by the end of today.
“Really, all that’s left now is the paving,” Columbus Public Information Officer Joe Dillon said Monday. “The paving isn’t a big job, maybe a day or a day-and-a-half.”
The permanent repairs come more than two years after the tornado/flooding that swept through Columbus on Feb. 23, 2019, which washed out a 10-foot section of the road at the bridge where it crosses Moore’s Creek, stranding residents of the 12 homes west of the washout for about a week after the storm.
The city paid Phillips Construction $24,000 to make the temporary repairs to the road, which remained in place until last week, when work on the permanent repairs began.
“The temporary repair work was replacing the main culvert pipe, replacing the washed out dirt and paving,” City Engineer Kevin Stafford said.
What the permanent repairs added that weren’t a part of the temporary repair job was adding tons of riprap on either side of the bridge, which addresses the main cause of the 2019 washout.
“The original (culvert) was a 48-inch pipe, which was replaced with a 60-inch pipe,” Stafford said. “So that went beyond FEMA requirements. But because of that change, FEMA required us to have an H and H study.”
An H and H study (hydrologic and hydraulic), is a study of movement of water, including the volume and rate of flow as it moves through a watershed, basin, channel or manmade structure. The studies ensure structures are sized correctly to handle floodwaters, while not inadvertently increasing flooding up or down stream.
FEMA approved the study and will reimburse the city for the cost of the permanent repairs, $39,097.
“The biggest change is the riprap on both banks along the bridge,” Stafford said. “That was added to prevent the erosion that caused the washout.”