Chelan County has opened the bidding process for numerous bridge-improvement projects.

"This is a new concept for us where we're doing what's called a 'bridge bundle' that will include work on five separate bridges here in Chelan County," says Chelan County Commissioner Shon Smith. "Like we always say, detours and having traffic delays are a headache but the end result will be wonderful. So we'll have to put up with a little bit of pain to get to that finished project."

Among the five bridges that will receive upgrades is the Peshastin Bridge, which Smith says is the biggest undertaking of the quintet.

"That project's going to include overlaying the bridge deck and replacing the deck joints. We tried to plan that one in-between school and sports activities, as well as the heavy volume of traffic that uses the bridge two or three times per day and the mass influx on the packing sheds in that area as well."

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Expansion joints allow concrete bridges to expand and contract and replacing them includes the removal of old concrete and the pouring of new concrete.

In addition to the Pehastin Bridge, the deck and joints of the Ardenvoir Bridge will also be replaced, and improvements will also be made to the New Griffith Bridge on Entiat River Road; the Chelan Falls Bridge on Chelan Falls Road; and the Stone Hill Bridge on Colockum Road.

The roadway approaches to each bridge will also be repaved where the road and bridge come together.

The Peshastin detail will require a four-week closure of the bridge with a ten-mile detour using North Road, while impacts are expected to be minimal for the remaining projects, with single-lane, flagger-controlled traffic and brief delays during working hours.

Work on the Peshastin Bridge will get underway on June 17 and is scheduled to run through July 12. A timetable for the remaining bridge projects will be established once a contractor has been secured.

The cost of updating the five bridges is estimated at $3.6 million, with all of the required funding coming from grants provided through the Washington State Department of Transportation.

One of the Most Treacherous Bridges in Idaho is Also the Most Adorable

Scroll on for a look at one of Idaho's most famous swinging bridges and its most frequent, fluffy travelers!

Gallery Credit: Ryan Antoinette Valenzuela

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