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Work on Route 7 retaining walls nearly finished

BRIDGEPORT — Work is nearly complete on three retaining walls to remedy a falling rock issue on a hillside along state Route 7 and an adjacent sidewalk in Bridgeport.

Lauren Borrell, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Transportation District 11, said the work is expected to be finished by Oct. 31.

The walls are being constructed along a sidewalk adjacent to the south off-ramp in Bridgeport.

That area of hillside has had large rocks fall from it periodically for many years.

After a recent inspection of the hillside, ODOT’s geotechnical engineers determined the hillside had a small slip. To prevent debris from falling into the sidewalk or roadway, the walls are being built.

“This is a rock fall remediation project by placement of three separate sections of rock safety wall along state Route 7 and Lincoln Avenue,” Borrell said.

Borrell said because the situation was caught early, ODOT was able to plan for the project and budget for it, instead of having to do an emergency repair.

The project is being handled by Bog Construction of Berlin Center for $243,724.

The concrete walls are being cast in place. They are expected to last 75 to 100 years.

“ODOT bridges are built to last 50 years of withstanding traffic. As long as nothing affects these walls, we expect them to last quite some time,” she noted.

The rockfall barrier walls are three different lengths: 132 feet, 508 feet and 296 feet. They are about 100 feet apart.

While some rocks and boulders have fallen occasionally from the hillside during the past few years, a major landslide occurred there several years ago. Rocks, mud and debris covered the sidewalk area, which is located between Bridgeport and Aetnaville.

It took several months for crews to clean up all the debris from that major slide. The hillside also was cut back during that project to help prevent additional slides.

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