Civil engineer says bridge on D Street is projected to be finished April 1, road May 1


Aaron Kunkler, Staff Reporter

Construction began Feb. 9 on the bridge spanning the canal on North D Street.

According to Josh Mattson, civil engineer with the city of Ellensburg, the bridge is projected to be finished by April 1, and the road may be opened by May 1.

“It just depends on the weather,” Mattson said.

Weather effects the rate at which the cement and asphalt can be poured.

Construction of a new bridge was prompted by the deterioration of the old bridge, particularly the girders on the eastern side.

Students may have noticed that the eastern side of the bridge was sectioned off, and traffic was directed toward the western edge of the bridge.

The city of Ellensburg received a federal bridge grant which is being used to fund construction of a new bridge.

Belsaas and Smith Construction won the contract with a bid for around $441,000 for the bridge, and $478,309 for the total bid. Mattson said this was covered entirely by the federal grant.

Other projects which Belsaas and Smith have undertaken are Grant County Bridge No. 244 and 1,000 Steps to Suncadia.

A spokesperson for Belsaas and Smith said that a bridge like this is relatively easy to build and presents no unique challenges during construction. They are premade off-site and shipped and assembled on-site.

Asphalt is usually not available in the Ellensburg area until around the May 1 deadline, but due to the mild winter, asphalt manufacturing will likely resume in late April, allowing Belsaas and Smith to likely meet its deadline.

An additional construction project currently undertaken by the city of Ellensburg is building a wellhouse on Airport Road for a recently developed well.

While D Street being sectioned off may be an inconvenience, the city has set up alternative routes for commuters to utilize.

The detour takes drivers down 18th and Walnut Street.