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Construction on new bridge over the Red river

The old bridge was built in 1939. It is the last of its kind in Texas, and is called a camelback pony truss bridge. It's also the fourth longest truss bridge in the state, but drivers will no longer cross it come summer time. Crews started construction on the new bridge in September. It will still be two lanes but will offer wider lanes.

 “Right now, they are installing the beams and pouring the deck for the bridge,” said Madeline Miller, spokesperson for Oklahoma Department of Transportation. “Later on, this year, around April or May, there will be a detour with the project. Whenever it gets closer to being finished with the project. They will have to do more deck work.”

Drivers who cross the Red River are happy to see a new bridge in the works.

 “Probably needed some repairs,” said Parker Scroggins, a Duncan resident who drives over the bridge. “It was long overdue for some repairs, especially with the water getting up sometimes and getting over the top. So, I believe it does need some new repairs.”

“I'm glad to see it finally happening because that is one narrow bridge,” said Jim Hart, a Wichita Falls resident. “If you get ice and snow on that thing it's really dangerous. I'm glad to see them do something about it.”

Texas and Oklahoma are splitting the bill on the $11.2 million bridge, but Oklahoma is taking the lead on the project.

Oklahoma will have the responsibility of maintenance and construction of the bridge,” Miller said.

And Miller said that work is moving right along.

 “They are a little ahead of schedule, so it should be wrapping up by the mid-summer of this year,” Miller said.

It won't be too much longer before drivers headed north or south of the Red River will have a smoother ride for the first time in almost 80 years.        

The old bridge is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, which means it can be relocated as is instead of being demolished. 

 

 


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