Author Topic: I just missed it but happy that it's finally open for the folks there to enjoy  (Read 63 times)

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Offline theking

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In arguably the most highly anticipated opening in recent memory, officials from Monroe County, the City of Marathon, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and other community partners gathered together with the Pigeon Key Foundation and Friends of Old Seven to cut the ribbon and officially welcome the public back to the renovated Old Seven Mile Bridge. The reopening of the bridge, closed since July 2016, marks the early completion of a massive renovation project. The 30-year restoration and maintenance program was budgeted at $77 million, $41 million of which was spent to complete initial repairs.

Restoration work for the bridge that was once called the “eighth wonder of the world” included three coats of paint for a rust barrier, primer and top coat, replacement of thousands of rusted metal plates and rivets, and installation of a new aluminum rail system. To ensure structural integrity, hydraulic jacks were used to lift 10-foot sections of the bridge, cut out the original 1936 I-beams, and install brand new beams manufactured on site.

“I am absolutely elated,” said Bernard Spinrad, board president of Friends of Old Seven, the organization that united to lead the charge and save the old bridge. Thanking the county, the City of Marathon, and the DOT, Spinrad celebrated the “successful public-private partnership, the fruits of which we witness today.”

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