Traffic at Eggners Ferry Bridge resumes as new bridge span moved - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Traffic at Eggners Ferry Bridge resumes as new bridge span moved into place

(Source: KYTC) (Source: KYTC)
(Source: KYTC) (Source: KYTC)
(Source: KYTC) (Source: KYTC)
(Source: KYTC) (Source: KYTC)
(Source: KYTC) (Source: KYTC)

Highway traffic at the US 68/KY 80 Eggners Ferry Bridge has reopened to vehicle traffic Wednesday morning.

A contractor moved a $20 million steel truss on Tuesday that will serve as a center span on the new U.S. 68/KY 80 Eggners Ferry Bridge.

Keith Todd with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, said as of around 1 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 4, the final jacking tower was removed, as well as the barges used to move the new span into place on the New Eggners Ferry Bridge. The main channel reopened, allowing all commercial tow boat traffic to resume at the site.

He said the main channel was cleared at about 11 a.m. and the Coast Guard alerted tow boats that normal traffic flow resumed.

It was estimated to take eight to 12 hours to move the 550 foot steel structure.

[Click here to take a live look at the move.]

The arch weighs 5.1 million pounds and is 110 feet tall, according to the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.

Highway traffic at the site resumed just before 5 a.m. on Wednesday. 

All boat traffic remained halted at the site as the contractor removed jacking towers used to raise the massive structure into place. 

Removing the towers will allow barges used to float the 5.1 million pound basket-handle arch into place. That work was expected to continue through Wednesday with a fresh crew.

The goal was to allow boat travel by 7 a.m. on Thursday, however, that was not achieved because of weather. KYTC reports high winds and the strong current made the cranes and the jacks unstable.

Thursday's forecast appeared more favorable to clear the channel.

The arch was constructed and painted on barges at the east end of the construction site.

Anyone wanting to watch the move is asked to go to Cherokee Park. KenLake State Park has opened its campground which may provide the best viewing.

There will be a 2,000-foot-clear zone around the construction area during the all-day move.

The Delta Mariner cargo ship hit the old bridge in January 2012 sending a 300-foot span of the bridge crashing down into the river below. An entire span of the bridge was demolished and had to be replaced.

The 8,400 ton cargo vessel was carrying parts for NASA when crashed into the 80-year-old bridge.

[See pictures from the bridge span collapse.]

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