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Lindvig finds its way around rushing water

POULSBO — Passersby on Lindvig Way will be getting a lesson in building a bridge around running water in the next few weeks.

After just two months, the project to build Poulsbo’s only bridge has reached an important turning point.

Spanning from around the intersection of Bond Road and Lindvig Way to just before the intersection of Viking Avenue and Lindvig, the project began May 14. It will replace the current 6.5-foot wide culvert connecting Dogfish Creek to Liberty Bay with an 88-foot long, 65-foot wide bridge, which is what was located there from the early 1930s until the late 1960s.

The bridge is expected to help with the health of the salmon-bearing waterway.

Until recently, excavation in the area had reached to just above the culvert. Actual removal of the concrete tube will take place in about two to three weeks, said Project engineer Andrzej Kasiniak.

“(Construction crews) are adapting their excavator to be able to lift such a heavy weight,” Kasiniak added.

July 15 marked the official start of the dates crews from Stan Palmer Construction could work “in the water.” Senior Field Inspector Mike Lund explained that this actually means crews can work in the river and bay beds during low tides.

This week, three 40-foot pipes filled with water and an estimated 1,500-2,000 sandbags were used to create a dam on the north side of the span. During low tides, the barrier creates a dry area for crews to continue removing dirt from around the culvert.

“And the kids love it because it’s holding the water back and they have a little more to play in,” Lund said with a laugh, pointing to some local youth swimming in Dogfish Creek.

A similar dam was added to the south side of the culvert on Friday morning. Once the culvert is completely exposed, a sump pump will be used to carry water from one side of the span to the other to allow crews a dry environment regardless of tides.

The suction pump utilizes two fish screens so that aquatic life will not be harmed.

As each 20-foot section of the culvert is removed, rip rap will be laid on the stream bed to avoid eroding the channel when the water is released.

The second set of girders, which will create the north side of the bridge, are expected to be placed in about one to one and a half months — after all of the channel work has taken place.

Lund said crews have been spending very long hours at the bridge, and he was pleased to report so far the bridge was still expected to be finished by about September as promised.

“They’re working hard to keep the schedule,” Lund said. “It’s a tight schedule but they’re on it at this point and in the end we could end up a day or two ahead of schedule.”

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