Clark County Public Works manages a comprehensive bridge program that includes regular inspection and maintenance of county-owned bridges.
Federal and state standards require the county to inspect and document the condition of its bridges at least once every two years.
Clark County owns and maintains 76 bridges, of which three are pedestrian bridges. The county also inspects 27 other bridges owned by cities and three owned by railroads.
Washington Administrative Code 136-20-060 requires the county to produce a written report on its bridge inspection program.
Part of the county’s program includes bridge replacement.
In 2016, the county will replace Cedar Creek Bridge, on Northeast Etna Road just south of the North Fork of the Lewis River in north Clark County. Cedar Creek Bridge is one of two weight-restricted bridges owned by the county.
More information is available on the Cedar Creek Bridge replacement webpage.
During summer 2015, a contractor working for Clark County demolished Fifth Plain Creek Bridge, on Northeast 88th Street about one-half mile east of Northeast Ward Road.
Fifth Plain Creek Bridge was the last wood support bridge owned by the county. It also was the only county-owned bridge classified as “structurally deficient,” which means the bridge’s condition or design has affected its ability to carry traffic. The bridge, prior to its removal, was not unsafe or likely to collapse, but it was at the end of its useful life. A replacement bridge opened on Jan. 21, 2016.
In 2012, Clark County replaced Cougar Creek Bridge, on Northeast Washougal River Road.
The bridge program also includes projects to:
- Seismically retrofit bridges so they will be better able to withstand earthquakes.
- Repair scour damage, a type of water erosion that can undermine bridge piers and abutments, and reduce the potential for future scour.
The county aggressively seeks outside funding to help pay for bridge projects. In 2012, the county was selected to receive $4.1 million in federal grants to replace one bridge, Fifth Plain Creek Bridge, and to upgrade four other crossings.
For more information on those bridge grants, watch this CVTV video: