View American Tobacco Trail bridge over I-40 in a larger map
After delays blamed on construction errors and rain, Durham city officials now hope to have a ribbon cutting in mid-October for the $9 million American Tobacco Trail extension and bridge over Interstate 40.
The project includes an 800-foot bridge and a 4.2-mile extension of the trail through southern Durham County into Chatham County. The Durham city website still says the bridge will be finished this month, and city officials originally planned for an Aug. 10 ribbon-cutting, but the work fell weeks behind schedule during the spring and early summer.
A surveyor’s error was blamed when massive steel-reinforced concrete support piers were constructed more than two feet too high on the north end of the bridge. The problem was corrected and the steel bridge deck was bolted into place across the highway in April, two months later than had been expected. Recent rain has been blamed for further delays in completing the bridge.
Now city officials are aiming for an Oct. 12 ribbon-cutting, to take place at Streets of Southpoint at the southern end of the bridge.
“It’s tentative at this point,” city spokeswoman Amy Blalock said. “We hope to be able to have it Oct. 12, but we’re several months out now. We’ll wait until we get closer to make a formal announcement. We’ve had so much rain.”