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Red Bridge Phase I begins

Construction on Beach Road was well underway Monday.

Construction is underway on Beach Road to replace the sanitary sewer and water main through the area of Red Bridge Park.

This is the first part of the Red Bridge Park project, which has three parts. After the sewer and water lines are replaced, the road will be restored to gravel until next spring.

Beginning in mid- to late-September, the Department of Natural Resources will begin replacement of the new bridge, a 180-foot, steel structure. The bridge will be approximately three times as long as the current bridge and extend further onto land east of the river.

The height between the bridge and Fish Hook River will stay at 7 ½ feet. The extra length is to make the bridge handicapped accessible.

Most of the bridge replacement will take place this fall except for the concrete decking. Because it will be late fall, the DNR will likely wait until spring to complete that part of the bridge.

Next spring, after the bridge is completed, the city will finish the improvement project, which will include paving the road and parking lot, along with the trail along the north side of Beach Road.

The city has received $137,000 in grant funding for the improvements. The new steel bridge is paid for by state DNR funding.

The Red Bridge replacement project will reroute the current trail, which goes across the trestle bridge to Highway 34. The trestle bridge is in poor condition and is posted now for a maximum of 1,500 pounds. The DNR will remove the trestle bridge as part of the project. It will not be replaced.

The trestle bridge will be removed one or two years after the Red Bridge replacement project is completed, DNR officials said.

The project will align with the Heartland Trail master plan, which shows the trail heading west through Red Bridge Park and along Beach Road with the final destination being Moorhead. The Heartland Trail Association and Chamber of Commerce have been a part of the planning project as well.

Anna Erickson
Anna Erickson is editor of the Wadena Pioneer Journal.
(218) 631-2561