Southside bridge over Gap Creek will close Monday because of poor condition

John Thompson • Oct 4, 2019 at 8:00 PM

ELIZABETHTON — Starting on Monday, some Elizabethton motorists will have to use an alternate route. The Southside Street bridge over Gap Creek will be closed because of poor conditions found during a requested inspection.

According to information provided by Mark Nagi, communications officer with the Tennessee Department of Transportation, the decision to close the bridge was made after discussions between TDOT and Elizabethton officials.

Inspectors found the bridge “in poor condition with heavy corrosion, as well as severe concrete deterioration as well as exposed reinforcing steel.”

Nagi said of the closing that “the decision to close a bridge is never taken lightly, but closing this bridge is the correct one in order to maintain the safety of the motoring public.”

A requested inspection was conducted on the 33-foot-long bridge on Aug. 20, with inspectors reporting the bridge was in poor condition. The inspector found severe corrosion and flaking on girders and severe concrete deterioration on the edge of the deck.

Other items noted by the inspectors was that the bridge rail is “critical with corrosion, holes, flaking, and severe section loss to all brackets that attaches to exterior beams.”

The inspectors also found “the curbs are poor with severe spalling and concrete deterioration with reinforcement exposed. The underside of the deck is poor with numerous hairline cracks with heavy leaching. There is severe spalling and concrete deterioration with reinforcement exposed on edges of deck. Beams “A and C” have up to 1⁄2” section loss in the top flanges. The beams are poor with severe corrosion, areas of section loss and flaking on the top and bottom flanges. Beam “A and C” has heavy section loss up to 5/8”, and web is crippling at abutment #1.”

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