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Posted Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017


The 117-year-old Flanders-Drakestown Road Bridge in Mount Olive will be replaced by Morris County in an expected four-month project that is set to start just after rush hour this morning.

photos show side and top of Flanders-Drakestown Road bridge

Varying views of the photos show side and top of Flanders-Drakestown Road bridge

Replacement of Mount Olive Bridge is Underway -- Detours Set UpThe bridge, built in 1900, has a daily traffic flow of about 950 vehicles. It also is a conduit for school buses heading to and from the high school and intermediary school in Mount Olive.

There is extensive deterioration of the bridge’s arches, with bulging, leaning, cracking and delamination (or failure of the composite materials) of the spandrel walls.

The span should be closed for 120 days, with construction scheduled for completion in mid-winter.

A detour will be installed on Wolfe Road and take traffic to Route 46, Naughright Road, Bartley-Drakestown Road, and to River Road.

“We know this will be an inconvenience for motorists. But this is a bridge that has served us well for 117 years and now must be replaced, so we ask for your patience during the construction process,’’ said Morris County Freeholder John Cesaro, who is the county governing board’s liaison on road and bridge projects.

Replacement of Mount Olive Bridge is Underway -- Detours Set Up

side view of bridge

A $1.5 million bid construction contract was awarded to Reivax Contracting of Newark. A $134,400 construction inspection contract was awarded to Dewberry Engineers of Bloomfield.

Flanders-Drakestown Road Bridge is a two span, stone masonry arch bridge. It is 34-feet long and 22.5-feet wide.

Per an agreement with Mount Olive and state historic officials, the county will replicate the look of the bridge as closely as possible to the original design.

The new structure will be a two-span, precast concrete arch bridge, with cast-in-place approach slabs and 30 feet curb-to-curb width. The existing stone masonry and capstones will be reused on the new bridge.

Detour signs have been set up to help guide motorists to alternate routes during the construction of a new bridge.