mind the gap
Austin City Council to explore future of Barton Springs bridge
The Austin City Council is excepted to discuss the future of one of Austin's oldest bridges, which serves as a major thoroughfare in and out of Zilker Park.
According to a memo to Mayor Kirk Watson and councilmembers from Capital Delivery Services director James Snow, the Barton Springs Road Bridge is in need of either rehabilitation or replacement.
An engineering study found that the bridge is structurally in fair condition but has significant degradation in the reinforcing steel in the bridge deck and structure.
Each day, more than 20,000 vehicles and pedestrians use the bridge as a main access point to Zilker Park. The bridge was built in 1926 and was expanded 20 years later in 1946.The rehabilitation option could cost the City as much as $38 million. It would replace the bridge deck and widen pedestrian and bike lanes. Less than half of the original structure would remain in place.
"It looks likes it's seen some age. I don't think it needs to be torn down, just given [its] history in Austin. I don't think it needs to be torn down. If they can update what we have, that would be awesome," Austin resident Jessica Baldwin said.
The alternative option is the construction of a new bridge altogether. There are several options that have a cost ranging from nearly $37 million to as expensive as $43 million.
Read the full story and watch the video at KVUE.com.