TARPON SPRINGS — Pinellas County Department of Environment and Infrastructure officials have moved up scheduled Beckett Bridge repairs from Monday to tomorrow, July 24, according to a press release. James Butts, with the county's Department of Environment and Infrastructure, said cracks found on the 90-year-old span connecting Riverside Drive and North Spring Boulevard must be addressed. “It's some cracking we've found that just needed to be paid attention to,” he said. “It's just easier to close the road so we wouldn't have the traffic slowing us down because it involves both lanes.” The county originally announced that the bridge would be closed from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Monday, July 28. An email sent out today, however, pushed that schedule up to tomorrow and slightly adjusted the time from to 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Signs with recommended detour routes will be posted in advance. The county press release suggests motorists use Meres Boulevard and South Florida Avenue to avoid the construction. The bridge's repair work became more urgent when a section of the bridge known as a transition heather "broke apart," Butts said Wednesday. County work crews laid an asphalt patch over the damaged area, which is where the movable drawbridge meets the stationary roadway. Crews will remove the asphalt tomorrow and redo it with concrete, Butts said. Eric Horchy can be reached at (727) 815-1071 or firstname.lastname@example.org.