Center Arch of Lake Champlain Bridge to Be Installed Soon

Fri August 26, 2011 - Northeast Edition

WEST ADDISION, Vt. (AP) The center arch of the new Lake Champlain bridge from Vermont to New York should be lifted into place by the end of August, an official said.

The 402-ft. (122.5 m) center span of the new bridge between West Addison, Vt., and Crown Point, N.Y., is being built at a New York marina 2 mi. (3.2 km) north of the bridge site where it is nearing completion.

“The workers are putting together the cable support systems. They have to be fabricated on site because they are so long. It is a bundle of cables inside a plastic jacket that will be used to support the bridge,” John Grady of the New York Department of Transportation told WCAX-TV.

Once the arch is done it will be floated down the lake on two barges, lifted into position and then secured to the rest of the bridge, said Grady.

“There will be a lifting system of cables that will come off the new bridge on the ends of the approaches, and the entire structure will be lifted into place. And beams will be placed underneath it and it will be bolted into place,” Grady said.

“We are looking somewhere near the end of the month we hope,” he said.

Almost two years ago the 80-year-old bridge that had spanned the lake was closed after it was found to be structurally unsafe. It was demolished. Construction on the new bridge began last year. It’s due to be finished by Oct. 9, but the contractor has been given a 65-day extension because of high water on the lake this spring.