Last updated: July 22. 2013 11:11PM - 1243 Views
By - tjoyce@civitasmedia.com

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A Mount Airy construction company has been awarded a $1.4 million contract to make repairs to a well-known landmark on North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

Smith-Rowe LLC was tapped by the N.C. Department of Transportation last week for the project involving Bonner Bridge over Oregon Inlet.

The work will include replacing what company President David Rowe called “crutch bents” that have failed at a number of locations on the bridge.

“It’s a type of support mechanism,” Rowe explained.

The N.C. Department of Transportation has twice installed the steel beams to provide additional stability for several of the main supports on the northern end of the bridge, due to sand erosion around those supports.

However, sections of the beams that are above water have become weathered because of exposure, and need to be replacing, the DOT reported.

“It’s a long away from home and a little bit different work than we’ve ever done,” Rowe said Monday regarding the project, “but we’re anxious to get to it.”

The company won’t be able to start until September, however, to minimize the effects of the work on Outer Banks tourism travel. It will require periodic lane closures so crews can take away materials and bring in steel, according to the DOT.

Officials said all repairs will be completed by next February.

“We’re glad to have it,” Rowe said of the DOT contract. The local company has handled projects valued from $50,000 to the $15 million range, “so it’s all in the mix,” he added.

Reach Tom Joyce at 719-1924 or tjoyce@civitasmedia.com.

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