Brockton is wrestling with what to do about the century old Greenock Bridge just south of Paisley.
It is in need of replacement or closure.
Originally Brockton had planned to replace the one lane bridge that crosses the Teeswater River with a new one lane bridge.
That plan has become a lot more complicated and possibly more costly now that a third party consultant has deemed the bridge to have a cultural heritage value.
The Warren Truss bridge is one of the few remaining bridges left to boast a span of over 30 meters.
However the heritage designation means the range of alternative solutions for the bridge could now go from the original 1 million dollar price tag to as high as 2.4 million dollars.
Originally Brockton had inquired about appealing the ‘cultural heritage value’, but consultants have since assured Council as long as the public is on board, Brockton can ultimately decided if that ‘heritage’ designation is going to stick or not.
As such Brockton is moving forward with an EA (Environmental Assessment) process which will involve public feedback.
The public feedback portion will play a role in determining whether or not Brockton treats the bridge as a bridge with ‘cultural heritage' value.
Brockton has a few options to consider, to rebuild, replace, rehabilitate or close.
If the price tag becomes too high, Brockton always has the option of simply closing the bridge permanently.
This is an option that Brockton Mayor David Inglis says no one wants.
He says to close the bridge would be like cutting off the northern section of Greenock from the rest of the municipality.
The EA process could cost anywhere from 10 to 100 thousand dollars. Council is hoping and expecting the EA cost to be at the lower end of that estimate.
The Greenock Bridge was constructed sometime between 1880 to 1920.
Severe corrosion in the steel members and aging abutments have made it necessary to either replace, rebuild, rehabilitate or close this century old bridge.
Bridge maintenance is always a challenge, and Brockton knows this all to well as the municipality owns and maintains a total of 38 bridges.