Days numbered for pedestrian bridge

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Already in need of repair prior to the July 19 tornado, the pedestrian bridge over B Street will now have to be torn down. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

The days are numbered for McGregor’s well-known pedestrian bridge, which spans across B Street. Already in need of repair prior to the July 19 tornado, the bridge is no longer salvageable.

City administrator Lynette Sander, speaking at McGregor’s regular council meeting Aug. 16, said the city was awarded FEMA funding following last September’s heavy rains, to repair the footing of the bridge at the south end, where the soil eroded. Those funds are still being held in a city account.

Following the tornado, a structural engineer inspected the bridge, determining if the frame could be re-used if the decking was replaced. A full report is still being completed, but Sander said the bridge has been deemed unsafe and must be torn down.

“It’s twisted,” she said. “When you look up close, it’s deteriorated.”

If a presidential disaster declaration is proclaimed, she said the bridge can be included as a loss from the tornado. By combining the two disasters (last fall’s rain and the tornado), full replacement of the bridge may be an option.

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