Local officials: Overpass collapse a reminder of aging roads and bridges
(PHOTO: FOX19 NOW/ Gordon Graham)
HAMILTON COUNTY, OH (FOX19) -
The old Hopple Street overpass that collapsed Monday night isn't the only 'functionally obsolete' road in the Tri-State. In fact, over 250 bridges and overpasses are considered functionally obsolete in Hamilton County according to a list compiled by the National Bridge Inventory.
Hamilton County has nearly 1,200 bridges and overpasses, but county transportation officials are responsible for roughly one-third of those.
“There's numerous bridges that fall within municipal jurisdictions, townships or the Ohio department of transportation,” said Deputy County Engineer Eric Beck.
Beck's office is responsible for 37 bridges that are functionally obsolete but that doesn't mean they're unsafe.
“It means there is some sort of design that it was originally built with that is not a current design standard. Something such as pavement width or guardrail height,” said Beck.
Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune said replacing aging bridges needs to be a national priority.
“We do what we can within the resources that we have on a local level, but these are largely state and federal issues that should be addressed by the state and federal government and they have failed miserably in meeting their obligations here,” Portune said.
Portune, who chairs the county transportation improvement district, will hold a meeting with federal, state and local officials on Monday to talk about what can be done this year to insure the integrity of our roads and bridges.