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Cherokee County to replace Lower Dowda Mill bridge

The Lower Dowda Mill Road bridge over Sharp Mountain Creek in northern Cherokee County will be replaced with a new, two-lane, steel-and-concrete span costing nearly $1 million. GOOGLE MAPS
The Lower Dowda Mill Road bridge over Sharp Mountain Creek in northern Cherokee County will be replaced with a new, two-lane, steel-and-concrete span costing nearly $1 million. GOOGLE MAPS

The Cherokee County Board of Commissioners has awarded a $984,480 contract to McCarthy Improvement Co. to replace the bridge that carries Lower Dowda Mill Road over Sharp Mountain Creek in the northern part of the county.

The existing bridge is a narrow, one-lane steel bridge with wood decking, no shoulders and posted weight restrictions, and it has reached the end of its useful life, staff said in a report to commissioners.

“The proposed bridge will be located in the same location as the existing bridge and will provide two, 12-foot-wide travel lanes and shoulders … a pre-engineered steel truss that will support a cast-in-place concrete deck,” staff said.

Lower Dowda Mill will be closed to through traffic during construction, expected to take up to eight months, staff said. A detour will be posted.

In related action, commissioners approved spending $31,279 to have Heath & Lineback Engineers Inc., which designed the bridge, provide construction inspection services for the project.