On Tuesday, October 30, 2018, representatives from KS Associates were among the attendees at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Highbridge Road Bridge in the City of Vermilion. KS Associates is the design engineer for the project and had been working with the City for nearly a decade to turn the project into a reality.
For 30 years, Highbridge Road had been left with a gap where it meets Norfolk Southern railroad tracks. In 1988, the original Highbridge Road Bridge, a timber truss bridge built in 1910, was determined to be structurally deficient and was subsequently removed. Motorists traveling along Highbridge Road had to take a 1.5-mile detour to continue on their north- or south-bound journeys. Stopped trains on an at-grade crossing on the alternate route further compounded the inconvenience and delay.
Today, the newly constructed bridge safely carries Highbridge Road traffic over the railroad tracks. The most significant benefit is that the bridge reduces response time — by more than four minutes in some cases — for emergency vehicles traveling to the southeast quadrant of the City. It also gives residents south of Vermilion access to the City’s growing commercial corridor on U.S. Route 6/Liberty Avenue.
According to Lynn S. Miggins, P.E., President of KS Associates, “It is an absolute joy and a privilege to be here celebrating the opening of Highbridge Road Bridge, a critical structure that will so substantially improve the quality of life in this community. My hat is off to former Mayor Eileen Bulan, the visionary who put the wheels in motion for this momentous day.”
Addressing attendees at the ribbon cutting ceremony, City of Vermilion Mayor Jim Forthofer said, “The economic impact of this bridge is going to be felt strongly. What’s most important, though, is that this bridge that we’re opening can literally make the difference of life or death for some of our City’s residents.” He added, “Construction took only about eight months, but the real work on this bridge began years ago.” He went on to recognize the many people who contributed to the project, including Lynn.
The project commenced in 2010 when Lynn was City Engineer for the City of Vermilion. Under her direction, KS Associates began working with the City to develop a funding strategy for the project. This effort ultimately resulted in securing a substantial portion of the $2.5 million needed to design and construct the project. KS Associates assisted the City in securing $1,440,000 in federal funding through the Ohio Department of Transportation’s Municipal Bridge Program, $200,000 in Federal funds for Railroad force account work, a $175,000 grant from the Ohio Public Works Commission, and $56,000 in federal funds for Right-of-Way acquisition.
The new bridge is a 125-foot simple-span steel girder superstructure on semi-integral concrete abutments supported by drilled shafts. The bridge has a concrete deck with concrete parapets and a 6-foot-high fence. The bridge is 41 feet wide, and includes a 10-foot wide allowance for a future shared-use path that will enable pedestrians and cyclists to safely travel to the Lorain County Metroparks locations in Vermilion.
To read more about the project, go to: Highbridge Road Bridge