Shawnee County to close deteroriating Willard Bridge on June 12

Shawnee County will close the deteriorating Willard Bridge to traffic on June 12. (File photo/The Capital-Journal)

Shawnee County will close the deteriorating Willard Bridge to traffic on June 12, public works director Tom Vlach told county commissioners Thursday.

 

Vlach responded after local resident Carol Marple raised questions about when the bridge would be closed and what steps the county would take to notify residents.


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The county plans to put up message boards sharing that information about two weeks before the bridge closes, Vlach said.

Public concern about the bridge’s condition arose in 2009, when the commission approved a list of priority transportation needs that said if one of the bridge’s eight steel pins failed, it would collapse without warning.

Commissioners on Monday also:

  • Voted 3-0 to appoint Linda Ochs interim director of the county health department and begin advertising for applicants to fill that job on a permanent basis. Health department director Allison Alejos recently resigned effective Friday.
  • Voted 3-0 to approve a contract with Wichita-based GraceMed to provide oral health services, at no cost to the county, to children seen at the county health department’s Women, Infants and Children clinic.
  • Voted 3-0 to contract with Ad-Wear & Specialty of Texas Inc., which submitted the lowest of five bids, to provide seasonal department T-shirts and clothing related to sports leagues, associations and clubs.
  • Recognized county corrections specialist Timothy Anderson for actions he took April 15 after a Shawnee County Jail inmate attacked a correctional officer with a homemade knife. Anderson got between the two and shielded the officer from being injured further, said corrections director Brian Cole.
  • Learned that an award presentation scheduled for Thursday afternoon at the Fitness Loop Trail at Shawnee North Community Park had been postponed and a new date hadn’t yet been set.

 

Contact reporter Tim Hrenchir at (785) 295-1184 or @timhrenchir on Twitter.

50 reasons to hit the road
Bud Hidalgo 11 days ago
Why close it, the new bridge isn't open?  About three weeks ago I went across and the old bridge, new bridge deck looked about 3/4 done and I don't remember seeing any road work being done going to new bridge.   Old Tom was always saying bridge would hold up until new one ready to open, was that an error?  

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