bridgeclosedDrivers on Ridge Road found the Salmon Creek Bridge closed late Monday after New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) inspectors found problems with steel underneath the bridge deck.  The bridge is located on the west side of Myers and Ludlowville Roads on the western edge of the Lansing schools campus.  DOT Public Information Officer for Region 3 Gene Cilento says the bridge will be closed for about two weeks.

"The repairs to this bridge at this time are being done by our in-house bridge crews," Cilento says.  "Because of the type of bridge and the location of the needed repairs they need to set up a scaffolding system in order to reach the repair spot, and to be able to get materials in there.   That's the first order of business, to get that platform system set up.  Then they'll do the actual steel repairs."

A rather long detour has been posted along the routes that would normally include the bridge.  Local residents will likely use smaller local roads, and Cilento says the DOT knows that routes through local neighborhoods are typically used by private cars and smaller vehicles.  But he says the big trucks that use Route 34B must use the posted detour because of the capacity of those state roads to handle heavier vehicles.

"We have to have to put the posted detour up on the state roads for the trucks and over-sized vehicles to go on roads that can handle them," he explains.  "The detour, using State Routes 34B, 90 and 34 has been posted and is to be used until the repairs can be completed."

The bridge was built in 1930.  Cilento says that among other maintenance over the years the concrete deck was replaced in 1980.  Today the bridge carries approximately 7,700 vehicles per day.  None of the bridges in Lansing are owned by the Town.  Lansing Highway Superintendent Jack French says some are state-owned and the rest are owned by Tompkins County.  Those governments' transportation departments are responsible for the maintenance and repair of their bridges, but they notify the local Highway Department when repairs are being made within their municipalities.

>Cilento says the problems were found during a routine inspection.  State-owned bridges are inspected a minimum of once every two years, and sometimes more frequently.