The 125th Avenue bridge southwest of Sioux Rapids will be coming out to be replaced with a culvert in the near future.
Several years ago, the bridge was brought to the Buena Vista County Engineer's attention after heavy use during the construction of the new Casey's store. Buena Vista County Engineer Jon Ites said the bridge was built around 1915. He noted that the outside supports of the bridge are holding absolutely nothing at the present time.
"It's a good thing the bridge is a one-lane bridge, otherwise we could have serious safety issues," said Ites.
In 1993 the city of Sioux Rapids annexed land which included the bridge into the city limits. That makes the city partially responsible for the repair and upkeep of the bridge.
Engineer Jon Ites presented an estimate for repair on the bridge to the Sioux Rapids city council Tuesday night. The (Natural Resources Conservation Service has money available for waterways that run into the Little Sioux River, which the stream does. The funds are to be used for stabilization. The NRCS will pay for 55 percent of the project with the other 45 percent most likely to be picked up by Buena Vista County and the City of Sioux Rapids. He estimated the work to come to $73,000 making the city's portion no more than $16,500 depending on estimates that will come in for the job.
The stream that winds to the bridge from the south has cut a new path for its waters, running not only under the bridge, but also in front of Rocky O'Hara's house, located just north of it. The stream will be routed into the culvert, which will be located just south of the existing structure. When all is said and done, there will be no handrails or guardrails, or anything resembling a bridge. Funds could be available as early as next week. "We will make the bend structured so that it lines up and is hydraulically efficient," said Ites.
The road may be closed for seven to 10 days to allow for the project.