After years of planning and fundraising, an old railroad line was converted into a public walking trail in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. Along the trail, a pedestrian bridge was needed to cross the roadway below. As the solution, a 12’ x 130’ Keystone®-style Continental® truss bridge was selected for its aesthetic appearance and budget-friendly cost.
“When the project went over budget, we needed a more cost effective bridge structure,” stated Chris Proffitt, Vice President of Heavy Highway Division with Scott and Murphy, Inc., the contractor on the project. “We were already familiar with the Continental trusses from Contech Engineered Solutions and worked with the sales engineer, engineer and municipality in order to come up with the best option for this site.”
The installation of the weathered steel, Continental structure was a bit challenging due to existing power lines in the area. A crane carefully lifted the structure and placed it on the concrete abutments, resulting in a successful, one-day installation. The roadway below was closed at 8:30 am and installation was completed just six hours later.
The project was made possible through fundraising efforts of the Pennyrile Rail Trail Foundation, which began promoting the Hopkinsville Rails to Trails project in 2001. Funds were donated from the Christian County Planning Commission and a variety of businesses and individuals who, collectively, pledged more than $300,000.
The first phase of the construction included construction of the trail beginning at the existing Downtown Riverwalk, continued over the new pedestrian bridge and ended at the Pardue Lane Trailhead. This phase included 1,800 linear feet of concrete trails, lighting along the trail, as well as a parking lot, drinking fountains and trail rule signs installed at the North Drive plaza.