County engineer’s office reviewing bridge replacement

SALEM TOWNSHIP — The Columbiana County engineer’s office is currently reviewing preliminary work, including obtaining right-of-way approvals, to replace the bridge over the Little Beaver Creek just west of Lisbon-Canfield Road.

The bridge is Salem Township on a frequently traveled back road connecting Leetonia and the area east of Salem to the city.

During its last regular meeting the bridge was discussed. Trustees unanimously approved allowing the county engineer to have access to property the township owned and will need to access for the bridge replacement.

Trustee Chairman John Wilms said there are three other property owners on the bridge site.

After receiving access approval, Brad Bosley, assistant design engineer with County Engineer Bert Dawson’s office bridge department, said they are currently working on the other three right-of-way acquisitions.

The bridge is single lane and motorists need to look ahead to the other side when approaching to check for oncoming traffic.

When two vehicles arrive simultaneously, usually the vehicle closest crosses first with the other vehicle yielding.

“It’s definitely a busy back road with lots of traffic from Leetonia and Lisbon that wants to stay off state Route 14 going to Walmart,” said Constable Dan Valentine. He added that a new two-lane bridge will be “major improvement.”

Valentine said there had been problems with asphalt breaking up on the bridge but never any structural problems with it. He also pointed out, traffic wise, there have been no big bottlenecks that he could recall. But he said there had been traffic crashes with vehicles going off the road on each side of the bridge. He said vehicles traveling east, heading down the long hill, have problems when the roads are slippery.

Bosley said the bridge will be made of pre-cast concrete box-beam, placed over reinforced sheet pilings. It will be 28-feet wide, 14 feet per lane and span the creek.

In a best case scenario — with the bidding and contract award processes — work could begin in two months, he said.

He expects the work to take about 90 days and traffic to be detoured onto Jersey Ridge Road and Canfield-Lisbon Road.