It's one of the first steps Llano County is taking to rebuild after disaster struck Kingsland and washed away the RM 2900 bridge.
TxDOT announced Friday to award an emergency contract to build a new perch bridge. The 49-year-old bridge was built for a 50-year flood but the entire center of the bridge was washed away by about 290-thousand cubic feet of water rushing per second.
TxDOT Austin District Engineer Terry McCoy said TxDOT plans to build a bigger wider bridge and execute a contract by Halloween and begin construction by mid-November.
“At its peak it'll be 5-feet higher than the old structure featuring 12 foot lanes, six-foot shoulder and a new 6-foot sidewalk,” McCoy said. "If all goes well the new bridge will be open by next April building a bridge is no easy task it takes time but we are putting measures in place to ensure we move as quickly and safely as possible."
About 5,600 cars used to travel along the bridge causing drivers like Megan Flores to find alternate routes. Flores said it's a small inconvenience to see progress. "Just for them to be on top of it you know for it to be happening next year is going to be great," said Flores.
TxDOT is estimating the project cost at $15 million dollars from federal and local funding, including incentives for the contractor to complete the job as quickly as possible.
In the meantime, drivers are encouraged to use r-m 1431 to access Kingsland.