At the most recent meeting of Mansfield City Council, bridges were clearly on members’ minds, as two pieces of legislation were passed on the subject.
Council considered and passed an ordinance allowing the donation of small parcels of land owned by the City for public right-of-way improvements related to the Bowman Street Bridge project. Together, these parcels represent less than an acre of land.
The project is a cooperative effort of the City of Mansfield, the Ohio Department of Transportation, and the Federal Highway Administration. It will involve a partial reconstruction of the bridge, located between Sixth and Springmill Streets.
Another measure would deal with all bridges in the city. Each year, the City of Mansfield is eligible to enter into agreements with the State of Ohio for inspection services. The cost of such inspection is entirely the responsibility of the State, with no local share or match.
The State’s bridge inspection program began in 2011. Any community may not join the program and thereby “opt out,” but in doing so it will be taking on the responsibility for adhering to technical bridge requirements.