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Lake Park bridge reopens

| March 20, 2015

COSHOCTON – It took years of planning and months of construction work, but the towpath aqueduct footbridge at Lake Park has finally reopened.

“As far as I am aware the bridge itself had not had work done on it since it opened in 1971,” said Lori Everhart, park director.

The renovations consisted of repair to the north abutment, repair to some of the piers, installation of new i-beams out in the water in front of piers to catch log jams, replaced handrails and replaced decking surface.

“This project has been in the works for six or seven years, but included a combination of trying to get grant funding and environmental stages,” Everhart said. “We had to get inspections done, do a mussel survey and relocate the mussels from the river. There was a lot of preconstruction work done before we could do work in the water. We did know the stone was dislodging on the north abutment and about eight to 10 years ago put a bunch of rock down to help deter erosion while we were waiting to do this project.”

The project cost a little over $500,000 and kept the bridge closed for about two and half months. It’s been open now though for probably three or four weeks and an official ribbon cutting for the donors, the construction company (that did the work) and ODOT is planned for around the first of May.

Everhart is thankful for those who helped pay for the project.

“It was a combination of a grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation as well as donations from the Fred E. Johnston Fund at the Coshocton Foundation, the Montgomery Foundation, Coshocton Rotary Foundation and Friends of the Parks,” she said. “It’s very rewarding to see the project finished. The construction company was Stanley Miller Construction and they did an awesome job. They were friendly with walkers and visitors who stopped to check on the progress and gave them updates.”

Everhart also has heard nothing but good comments on how the bridge turned out.

“It’s a lot smoother and easier to ride bikes over and push a stroller over,” she said. “This is an iconic historical structure in our county and we knew it needed preserved. We just wanted to make sure we did it the correct way, which is why it took so long.”

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Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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