Construction on the Cathedral Oaks Road Bridge began Monday, beginning a project that aims to replace the bridge completely as well as a stoplight in the area over the next two years.
The bridge is located on Cathedral Oaks Road immediately west of Turnpike Road near the entrance to Tucker’s Grove Park, according to the County's Public Works Department, which released a statement about the project Monday.
The bridge was originally slated for seismic retrofit, but further investigation showed the bridge needed to be replaced because "reactive aggregate" was discovered inside, which has been found in many local bridges, including the overpass at Los Carneros, which is also being replaced because of degradation over time.
This $3.2 million project will be funded through a Federal Highway Bridge Program grant for $2.7 million, with the remaining money coming from state seismic funding and county Measure A monies.
The bridge, once replaced, is designed to improve pedestrian and bicycle access.
Construction will be performed by Granite Construction Co. and will span over two seasons due to environmental restrictions.
Eric Pearson, the construction manager on the project, said the project is taking two years because of the permits required from the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Construction can take place only from the creek bed below from May to October, so the project will construct half of the bridge this year and must wait until next May to construct the other half, he said.
A new traffic signal replacing the one at Turnpike and Cathedral Oaks is also planned as part of the project, he said.
The work is scheduled to finish in February 2016, contingent on weather, and drivers in the area are encouraged to use alternate routes.
Crews will be working Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m and traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction, turn pockets will be removed and the traffic signal will be replaced with temporary four-way stops.
The county also stated that drivers should be aware of reduced speed zones and increased traffic control when driving through the construction site, with possible five- to 10-minute traffic delays.