Every year the Scioto County Engineer releases an annual report on the conditions of county roads and bridges. The report also outlines the financial commitment it would take, to complete such a task.
According to Scioto County Engineer Craig Opperman the total need for Scioto County Roads and Bridges is $17.7 million. He said the immediate needs of the bridge system in Scioto County is $4.1 million.
According to the report there are 808 bridges in Scioto County, 498 of them have a span of 10 feet or greater, 310 of the bridges have a span of less than ten feet.
In the report Opperman lists 49 bridges, throughout Scioto County that are in need of repair. Of the 49, eight are structurally deficient and 26 are functionally obsolete under Ohio Department Of Transportation (ODOT) standards, which means the structures require replacement to meet standard with qualifications, standard weight capacity or realignment for safety.
According to Opperman there are 49, 10 foot and over structures that are in need of replacement with a total cost of $8.68 million to complete. There are 80 structures under 10 foot in need of replacement with a total cost of $1.9 million.
Opperman said his office has taken some steps to bring more improvements to county roadways and bridges.
When it comes to paving improvements in 2009 $4.223 million was spent, in 2016 there will be $7.092 million spent on the program.
“The cost increase is the result of approximately 46 more miles of resurfacing scheduled in the next five years compared to the same period beginning in 2009. The budget price of hot mix asphalt increase of 153 percent due to fluctuating petroleum prices,” Opperman said. “Budget prices for chip and seal asphalt liquid increase of 139 percent due to fluctuating petroleum prices.”
The county bridge system in Scioto County was funded at $16.4 million in 2009 and $10.6 million at 2016.
Opperman accounts for the decrease in funding to work that’s been achieved in the past eight years on the overall bridge replacement and maintenance program. He said the funding decrease represents a 35 percent reduction in the overall bridge needs for county and township roads.
In 2009 the immediate need from bridge replacement went from $7.6 million to $4.1 million in 2016.
“The costs reflects the work which has been achieved on the most advanced deteriorated bridges in Scioto County. While no bridge is unsafe to pass a passenger car or truck, there are some weight restricted bridges for larger trucks. With the completion of this year’s schedule we anticipate this number being reduced by approximately two million dollars,” Opperman said.
With all that’s been achieved within the bridge and roadway program of Scioto County the revenue has gone down, due to various factors.
“Increasing material and labor costs have not been offset by revenue increases. The overall gains we are obtaining is being achieved in spite of stagnant or slightly lower revenue years since 2009. The engineer’s office has implemented different processes such as micro-surfacing and three-sided box bridge programs to reduce the overall cost of the improvements for the betterment of the road system,” Opperman said.
For more information and responsibilities of the Scioto County Engineer visit, www.sciotocountyengineer.org.