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Terra Alta bridge has been closed since 2017 with no plan for reopening

TERRA ALTA — Nearly three years after CSX closed a bridge in Terra Alta, there’s still no news on reopening it.

CSX says the bridge work is being “conducted” by the State Division of Highways (DOH), with contributions from the railroad.

“I know that it’s probably an expensive project, but it needs done in the worst way,” said Preston County Commissioner Dave Price, a Terra Alta resident. And “The detour is in shambles” as well.

The DOH did not respond to requests for comment in time for this report. On its website, it indicates patching will be done on Ringer Avenue between July and October, patching on Crane Avenue between October and December, and stabilization on Bridge Street between April and June.

“It’s awful, it’s in horrible condition.” Price said of Ringer Avenue, the detour. “If it was a smooth detour it wouldn’t be quite so bad.”

The bridge carries vehicles and pedestrians, running between W.Va. 7 and Highland Avenue. It was closed Aug. 28, 2017.

Price said he was originally told it would take three years for the work. “And if they say it’s going to be another two years, that’s really sad.”

He plans to ask the other two county commissioners to agree to sending a letter to the DOH, asking for an update on the project.

This bridge in Terra Alta has been closed since 2017 with no date set for when it will be able to reopen.

In September 2017, a CSX spokesman told the newspaper that a year previously the company “began working closely with officials in Terra Alta and at the West Virginia Division of Highways to replace the bridge over CSX tracks at Bridge Street and transfer ownership to the town.”

In a recent email, CSX said that “While CSX is contributing towards this project, the bridge replacement is being conducted by the
WV Department of Highways who should be contacted for information on project status.”

In 2017, CSX said, “CSX bridge experts determined the bridge deck is unsafe for pedestrians and vehicles. In consultation with town officials, the bridge was closed to all traffic until it can be replaced.”

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