The Croft Street Bridge in Carrollton is undergoing renovations due to some deterioration in a cross beam at the north end of the bridge that the Department of Transportation deemed unsafe. The City of Carrollton will begin renovations starting on Monday, March 13 and is expected to be completed by April 1. Considering that it is an old wooden structure that has been up since the 1800s, the bridge requires periodic maintenance from time to time. Norfolk Southern is the railroad company that owns the bridge but the City of Carrollton took responsibility of the bridge in exchange for the Train Depot located on Bradley Street back in 2005. This kind of ownership is very unconventional and requires the City of Carrollton to get permission from Norfolk Southern whenever the bridge requires repairs. This requires the city to have a certain kind of insurance, a right of entry permit and various other documents in order to pursue renovations on the bridge.
“It is a very complicated and difficult arrangement,” said Tim Grizzard, Carrollton City Manager. “We are responsible yet we have to get their permission to work on it, back when they were responsible they could work on it anytime they want.”
The Croft Street Bridge is not only a Carrollton monument but also serves a great purpose for the city and its residents. Those who live in the area are more than likely aware of the railroad that runs through town and how the train will periodically stop in its tracks and will sometimes take a great deal of time to get moving once again. The Croft Street Bridge, however, goes over the railroad tracks, which allows people to escape the nuisance of having to wait for the train to regain momentum. Though the bridge could be replaced by a new and more modern structure, a lot would have to be done. The structure would need to be raised eight feet which would make the approach ramps too steep for vehicles to cross.
“It would impact Croft Street, and homes in the area, and side streets so it’s just not worth the impact of the neighborhood,” said Grizzard.
The city of Carrollton hired the contractor that did renovations on the bridge in 2010 to lead the construction this time. After a long, complicated process the City of Carrollton has all of the necessary requirements to begin renovations on the bridge. Though the damaged cross beam was the main issue with the bridge that made it unusable, there are a few other minor renovations that need to be done to it as well in the upcoming weeks.
“None of that will prevent it from opening,” said Grizzard. “We have replaced the beam that would prevent it from opening and they are going to do everything that they can to get it open by the first of April. Then some of the work can continue when the bridge is open.”
The Croft Street Bridge is on track to reopen by the first of April so the people of Carrollton can continue to admire its long history and utilize it when necessary