(Town Crier photo/Nan Snider)
The antiquated tank car bridge on the corner of Missouri and Asher Streets in Caraway was replaced last week with a new concrete structure and is now open to passing traffic.
"The old bridge allowed only one car to pass at a time," Mayor Joe South said. "The edges of the tank car were beginning to break, and we were concerned about its safety. The old bridge has restricted water flow an had become a hazard.
"We appealed to Judge Dale Haas for help in replacing the structure. Judge Haas and the highway department has be very generous in getting the work done. They started the work in town three weeks ago and it was opened to traffic last Friday."
"This bridge has been a project with the county and city working as partners," said Councilman Bo James. "We had to move a water line, which took about 16 hours of work. Fortunately, our water only had to be off for two hours. This has been needed for years. The county did the fill and street work. The city purchased rock to reinforce the bridge."
The total cost of the new bridge on Missouri Street is estimated at $150,000 paid by Craighead County and $5,000 paid by the City of Caraway.
Two new bridges have been added south of Caraway in an ongoing effort to alleviate the drainage problem, along with 10 double tank car structures. Three more tank car structures will be added in the following months. The total effort is a three way levee project effort involving Judge Haas's office, the Buffalo Island Drainage Commission, and the Corps of Engineers.