LONGBOAT KEY Fla. (WWSB) - A big construction project gets underway Monday on a popular Suncoast bridge. Crews will begin working on the Longboat Key bridge pass on the northern end of Longboat Key.
Hours before crews get to work, signs now stand from one end to the other of the bridge pass warning drivers work will start taking place.
“Safety is large concern about it,” said Curtis Neil Harrison, who was enjoying a day at Longboat Key with friends. This was his third time in the area, but it was the first time he decided to enjoy it close to the bridge. And when told improvements are underway...
“It looks like it could be in better condition,” he said.
Starting Monday, crews will begin a nearly $4 million project to repair this bridge. The Florida Department of Transportation crews will repair the rusted steel and grid deck on the movable span. Also, they will fix the concrete beams, sidewalks and railings, among other things.
Last month, ABC 7 spoke to local charter boat captain Casey Lamb, who said these improvements are crucial.
“Lot of erosion, lot of rust through the concrete spans and certainly needing some love,” he said.
FDOT Public Information Specialist Brian Rick told us back in March construction won’t affect the daily commute.
“We are not permitting lane closures of any kind to occur from Friday at 9 p.m. to Sunday at 9 p.m. So on the weekends it will not impact motorists and will not impact residents and visitors,” he said.
The bridge is one of two ways to get onto Longboat Key, and connects it to Anna Maria Island. While this bridge is more than 50 years old, FDOT officials say it’s still okay to use.
“It’s Florida, people come here to vacation, they want to go somewhere that looks nice,” said Harrison.
Work on this bridge will continue until some time this Fall.