Waterport-Carlton bridge latest effort by county to improve infrastructure
CARLTON – A bridge on Waterport-Carlton Road from 1934 was replaced with a new one at a cost of nearly $500,000. The county celebrated the new bridge with a ribbon-cutting on Monday.
That project is the latest effort by Orleans County officials to upgrade its infrastructure. It is doing much of the work without any state or federal asisstance.
The county is also paying $322,935 this year to Redman Construction in Brockport to replace a bridge from 1968 in Barre on Oak Orchard Road over Manning Muckland Creek.
The county replaced two bridges last year, two culverts this year, and will do two more bridges and two more culverts next year, all to be paid with county dollars. The projects will cost about $5 million.
Many of those projects used to be funded 80 percent by the federal government, 15 percent by the state with only a 5 percent local share. But the federal and state dollars have been hard to come by in recent years.
County officials worried the bridges would be closed due to deteriorating condition.
“The county is doing it’s part to repair our roads and bridges,” Legislature Chairman David Callard said.
He wants the state and federal governments to follow that example, particularly directing more resources to fix canal bridges. Some of those have weight limits less than 10 tons.
Local farmers have complained for several years that the weight-reduced or closed bridges force them to take long detours. It’s the same with fire trucks and school buses.
And now, with winter approaching, Callard said it could be the same dilemma for snow plow trucks.
“Our snow plows won’t be allowed over some of these bridges,” Callard said.
He has a meeting on Friday with state legislators to press the issue. Callard said he will be meeting with State Sen. Joe Robach of Rochester, who is chairman of the Transportation Committee in the State Senate. Callard said State Assemblyman Steve Hawley and State Sen. Robert Ortt will also be part of the discussion.