Home Page: Okeefe Family Website


Construction of the New Sunset Beach, NC, Bridge

Jo O'Keefe Copyright 2010 All Rights Reserved

Projected completion date: December 14, 2010

English Construction Company, Inc., Lynchburg, Virginia

Page 3

July 6, 2008 -- September 2, 2008

These images depict both the beginning of causeway paving and the interaction of staff of NCDOT and English Construction Company. At all times white construction company vehicles and yellow NCDOT trucks can be seen at all three or four locations where work is underway. Lights used during night work are on poles in the background.
July 6, 2008: Widening and elevating the causeway has begun. I will post photos later. These are the first piles that will be inserted in the marsh beside the causeway. They will support the temporary detour will include an 800-foot bridge that will be slightly elevated over the marsh. The causeway eventually will be widened from its current width of approximately 22 feet to 30 feet. The detour portion of the causeway will be about a foot higher than the portion formerly used. The detour will not be in use until around Labor Day.
July 12, 2008: This photo depicts two aspects of construction of the causeway detour. The first is that a second pair of beams have been welded onto the ones shown above in the July 6, 2008 photos. The second is men selecting the site for placement of the next beams.
This is a very important part of detour constuction. Under the crane are two elements shown on Page 2 dated May 30 and June 30. The lower level consists of steel beams shown on June 30. Above them are concrete deck slabs. The crane rests on top to work on piles to the left.
This is the widened and partically elevated causeway. Each layer of asphalt added raises the height of the causeway. It has now been expanded to 30 feet. The sides will be pedestrian and bicycle paths.
July 30, 2008: The new pavement has faded a bit. It is a blessing. Motorists now have a shoulder and no longer have to focus to remain within a narrow lane.. The causeway has been elevated two and a half feet, preventing flooding during high tides.
The detour bridge now is 240 feet long. Approximately 22 piles have been inserted into the marsh to support it.
These are some of the bridge support columns on the mainland seen from the ocean side of the pontoon bridge.
August 5, 2008: NCDOT has shared a diagram of both the detour bridge and the permanent bridge.
August 12, 2008: The pairs of support columns on the mainland have all been completed. They now have caps on top connecting them. They also have sole plates to which the girders that will stretch from column to column will be attached. The highest pair of columns is near the Intracoastal Waterway. The shortest one is at the front of the photo. Immediately behind the vehicle is a tall hill that English Construction Company built. It will be the approach ramp.
August 23, 2008: The detour is much longer now, nearly 600 feet. Concrete barriers have been placed along a portion of the sides. The crane remains in position at the end to do more work.
This is a small piece of equipment held up by the crane throughout the weekend, swaying in the wind. September 2, 2008: The crane inserting piles to support the temporary detour bridge is now very close to the built-up sand next to the causeway onto which vehicles will go.