Lower clearance during bridge maintenance


Beginning Monday, the vertical clearance under the SR-312 Bridge in St Augustine over the Matanzas River will be reduced by four feet, the Florida Department of Transportation announced to Historic City News.

The vertical clearance is being reduced from 65 feet to 61 feet at average high tide to allow for cleaning the eastbound bridge and repainting it with a protective coating.

This reduction in vertical clearance will continue through July 15.

The average daily eastbound traffic across the Mickler-O’Connell Bridge is 17,500 vehicles, according to a spokesperson for the Florida Department of Transportation. The change to the vertical clearance affects boaters only — vehicular traffic is not affected by the work.

The temporary clearance reduction has been coordinated with and approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

This project will help maintain the integrity of the structure and protect the steel frame of the bridge, which was built in 1976. Repairs will also be made to the fender system within the river, the concrete bridge deck, bridge joints and the bridge drainage system.

FDOT hired Astron General Contractors Inc. of Jacksonville, North Carolina to complete this $1.5 million project by late 2012.