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US 59 Bridge Opens Over Little Horse Creek - KOAM TV 7

US 59 Bridge Opens Over Little Horse Creek

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OTTAWA COUNTY, OK -

For about five months drivers trying to get either Grove or Afton had to be rerouted through Fairland. Now as you can see both lanes are completely open to traffic saving drivers precious time on their commute."

"It'll probably save me 30 minutes if I had to guess,” says Tennessee fisherman Brandon Card.

For those like Card traveling down to Monkey Island from out of town to compete in next week's “Bass Master Classic” the new bridge is a life saver.

"It was definitely a nuisance going the other way you know I had to drive way out of my way. I went west, and then south, and then came back east, and so now it's just a straight shot, makes it a lot easier."

About 3,400 drive over Little Horse Creek every day. First built in 1944, because of increased traffic over the years ODOT deemed the bridge structurally deficient.

ODOT spokesperson Kenna Carmon "We were noting some issues on both the driving surface, the deck of the bridge, and also on the structure underneath the deck, the substructure, so it was just time for this bridge to be fully replaced."

Open just in the nick of time for “Bass Master Classic” competitors like Card coming down for tournament practice on Friday.

He says "It's probably a lot safer, you know a new bridge is going to be better than a seventy, eighty year old bridge."

While this bridge is open construction crews are still hard at work laying gravel on either side, putting on the finishing touches until it passes its final inspection. They'll be here for another month or so.

Since 2011 ODOT has reduced the number of structurally deficient bridges from 1,200 to 339. ODOT hopes to repair or replace 99% of its structurally deficient bridges by the end of the decade.

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