The American Road & Transportation Builders Association has released its 2017 Bridge Report, and the Carolinas are among the Top 20 state’s with the most bridges in need of repair.
Charlotte is listed as home to two of N.C.’s worst, based on usage: The bridge at Interstate 277 over Brevard Street (86,000 daily crossings); and the Interstate 77 ramp bridge over Irwin Creek (39,750 daily crossings). Both bridges are about 50 years old.
The report notes there are 56,000 structurally deficient U.S. bridges in the country, carrying an estimated 185 million daily crossing. Of those, about 1,900 bridges are part of the Interstate Highway System.
Out of the 50 states, North Carolina is ranked No. 11 based on the sheer number structurally deficient bridges, and South Carolina is at No. 22.
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Just under 10 percent of North Carolina’s 18,099 bridges are structurally deficient, the report states. That’s about 1,790 bridges.
In South Carolina, 10.3 percent of the 9,358 bridges are considered structurally deficient (964 bridges).
Rhode Island is at the top of the list, with 24.9 percent of its bridges called deficient. Iowa is No. 2, at 20.5 percent.
Here are more details about how North Carolina ranked in the survey.
- 1,790 N.C. bridges are classified as structurally deficient, which means one or more of the key bridge elements, such as the deck, superstructure or substructure, is considered to be in "poor" or worse condition.
- 3,086 bridges, or 17 percent, are classified as functionally obsolete. This means the bridge does not meet design standards in line with current practice.
- 3,106 bridges are posted for load, which may restrict the size and weight of vehicles crossing the structure.
- Over the last 10 years, 2,084 new bridges have been constructed in the state; 189 have undergone major reconstruction.
- The state has identified needed repairs on 199 bridges, which the state estimates will cost $36 million.