After initially saying earlier this week that it would be "several months" before traffic would be allowed back on the Harrisburg Road bridge, limited traffic is being allowed on the bridge. City officials worked with engineers from the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department to stabilize the bridge.
The Harrisburg Road bridge normally handles 15,000 vehicles a day. Right now, a limited number of vehicles are allowed to go over the bridge. Two lanes of the bridge are open, and the traffic lights around the bridge have been adjusted to accommodate traffic. Traffic is allowed to flow under the bridge in both northbound and southbound lanes.
Structural engineers that make up the Heavy Bridge Maintenance Section are working around the clock to reestablish enough integrity to damaged areas of the State Highway 1B overpass to allow traffic above and below the bridge to resume as soon as possible, according to Arkansas State Highway and Transportation (AHTD) officials.
Crews have constructed a temporary timber support system upon which a steel beam has been placed to support jacks that will be used to elevate the bridge deck. A total of four of the bridge’s steel beams will be elevated to allow work underneath on the columns as well as the pier cap (the horizontal concrete section).
The repairs to the bridge are expected to take several months.