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District awards contract to safeguard railroad bridge on St. Francis River

Memphis District
Published Aug. 6, 2020
IN THE PHOTO, shows some of the erosion the project will address.

IN THE PHOTO, shows some of the erosion the project will address.

Scouring can be a good thing when it comes to pots and pans, but not so much when it comes to rivers. When strong currents move downstream their tremendous forces can erode banks, damage flood control works, and threaten infrastructure in the rivers.

Two bridges crossing a major Arkansas waterway were under attack by scouring currents that threatened to undermine the safety of the structures. In response to this potentially dangerous situation, the Memphis District on July 30 issued a repair contract to Polk & Associates.

The project consists of repairing a scour site downstream of State Highway 51 Bridge which crosses over the St Francis River at Fisk, Missouri, as well as a Union Pacific Railroad Bridge.  These bridges serve communities in Stoddard and Butler Counties, Missouri.

According to Memphis District Project Manager Vickie Watson, “Rivers generate a lot of energy and, as a result, at times begin to erode their banks trying to ‘create a new path,” she said. “Left unattended, such erosion will continue to eat away at the soil and dirt which make up the banks of the rivers causing the loss of precious land, forests, and other features such as roads and bridges. This particular project is near two crucial structures – a railroad bridge and a highway bridge.”

The Project Delivery Team (PDT) worked with our local Partner, the Inter River Drainage District, to bring this important contract to the Contract Award milestone. PDT members include Joshua McLarty (technical lead/hydraulics), Cody Isbell (geotechnical), Jeff Glass (civil design), Kevin Piggott (environmental), Kevin Keller (cost engineering), Conrad Stacks (storm water), Bobby Porter and Hugh Coleman (real estate) Damon McDermott (regulatory), David Slocum (office of counsel), and Steven Austin and Kimberly Danielray (contracting).