Construction Work on Austin Bike Bridge Delayed

Construction on Austin's planned bridge for cyclists spanning Barton Creek has been delayed a few months for a redesign.

The nearly $11 million, two-phase project began early this year with tree clearing near the creek and construction of some bike lanes, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

The first construction phase, over the creek, has been postponed because engineers want to redesign underground structures that would support the planned 14-foot-wide, 1,045-foot-long bridge.

Austin officials and engineers with the state's transportation department say the problem is that limestone bedrock turned out to be farther underground than thought. Tests done beforehand had indicated the rock was just a couple of feet below the surface.

When crews began drilling shafts for the bridge supports, they found the solid rock was between four and 15 feet below the surface.

Engineer Mike McKissick of the state's transportation agency said the current estimate for the bridge's completion is next year at the latest.

Meanwhile, the Texas Department of Transportation has accepted a contractor's bid to handle the project's second phase, which includes two bridges intended for cyclists and pedestrians over State Loop 360. Engineers say that phase should start in January and be done by spring 2016.

Austin officials hope the bridges will encourage residents to travel downtown by bicycle rather than in cars.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us