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Bridge work under way after delay

The sounds of major construction work are once again echoing offthe banks of the Bogue Chitto River.

Construction crews with T.L. Wallace Construction Co. ofColumbia finished placing beams across a 110-foot section of theuncompleted Bogue Chitto River Bridge around 2 p.m. Wednesday.

The beams are the first obvious step in the crews’ work as theytake over the project following the termination of its originalcontractor in May.

Jimmy Bullock, site supervisor on the project, said the companywill begin conducting the deck work across the span around themiddle of next week.

“I’ve got a little work to do underneath the bridge first,” hesaid.

Jeff Wilson, who owns the Peanut Shack on the town side of theriver, said he was pleased to see T.L. Wallace Construction crewson site.

“They’re getting it done,” he said.”It didn’t take them no timeto get those beams up.”

Bullock said he appreciated the people of Bogue Chitto and theirattitude to the project. He said the company is not receiving anyof the blame associated with bridge delays.

“Everybody’s been nice and very cooperative,” he said.

However, Bullock said he is asking that the public not use atemporary bridge that has been reconstructed at the site.

“I understand they are eager for the bridge to be finished butthat temporary bridge was not designed to take a lot of traffic,”he said.

Bullock urged Bogue Chitto residents to continue to use theeight-mile detour at Fox Road until the Bogue Chitto River bridgeis opened for traffic.

District Three Supervisor Nolan Earl Williamson and arepresentative of the bonding company that took charge of theproject when the original contractor reneged have both stressedthat the bridge will be opened as soon as possible.

The bridge will likely be opened while construction crews arestill working on the project, Williamson said.