The actual name is Wayehutta Road Bridge, and it hasn't been replaced yet, it will be replaced starting in July of 2012 but will remain standing and will most likely be used on the new County Greenway, which will require moving it a few miles downstream, because they are pushing the DOT to allow them to use the bridge very hard. There is also a concrete arch bridge a little further down the river that will be replaced in 2014 that was originally built in 1936, washed out in 1940, and replaced in 1941 with the current bridge, which was rehabbed in the 1970s and the rail on the upstream side replaced, the new bridge is planned to have concrete arch railings as well.
Do you know if the project to replace the bridge will use any federal money… or if the bridge is being replaced with a state aid grant, does that state aid grant draw any federal funds?
If there is any federal involvement of any kind and the bridge can also be found either eligible for listing or actually listed on the National Register of Historic Places, then NCDOT is required by law to conduct Section 106 and they must consider alternatives to demolition, and if they still choose demolition, they must mitigate the “adverse effect” caused by the demolition of the bridge. Mitigation could include things like the salvage of parts of the historic bridge as you mentioned.
I am curious where you heard that the bridge was not historic. Keep in mind that being simply “eligible” for the national register of historic places is exactly the same from a legal standpoint as being physically listed on the national register. Eligible or listed, both require Section 106 if there is federal involvement. According to the bridge marketing page on NCDOT’s website, the bridge is listed as NR (National Register) eligible: http://www.ncdot.org/doh/preconstruct/pe/ohe/histarchi/bridg... and assuming that is not a typo, than whoever told you the bridge is not historic is not being truthful.
I did find the project information page for the bridge, although it doesn’t say a lot:
I also found that apparently there was a meeting held about the bridge this evening. Hopefully you were able to attend.
Let me know if you can fill me in on the questions I raised above, and from there, my next step will be to approach NCDOT for additional information. You can get in touch with me directly here: http://www.historicbridges.org/contact/index.htm
This bridge is on the list to be replaced within 2 years. Most of the community see the need and understand that it is difficult to keep it if it is not being used, but we would like for some of its architectural and historical aspects, such as the steel side rails, to be used as part of the new bridge. We have been told that this bridge is not on the "Historic Register" and they do not have the funds to spend any extra money on "enhancements". I know that budgets are tight now, but I also know that when it is GONE, it will not come back. Can you send me any information you have on the history of this bridge and what I need to do to get it recognized.
Thanks, Charles Hill