UPDATE, 3:13 p.m. Thursday: Teton County officials are requesting that drivers avoid Cattleman's Bridge until 6 p.m. today while crews finish "last-minute work that needs to be completed," according to a Nixle alert they sent out Thursday afternoon.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: A temporary bypass at Cattleman’s Bridge is on track to open Thursday, according to Bob Hammond, the Wyoming Department of Transportation’s resident engineer.
Cattleman’s Bridge over the Gros Ventre River on Spring Gulch Road has been closed since June, when spring flooding caused it to buckle. WYDOT had already planned to replace the bridge in 2018.
The temporary bypass bridge will be a single-lane, signal-controlled structure with alternating traffic. The setup will be similar to the bypass that directed cars on Gros Ventre Road over the summer after floodwaters eroded the riverbank near the road to Kelly.
The Cheyenne firm Reiman Corp. won the job to replace Cattleman’s Bridge in October with a low bid of $3.8 million. Including engineering and other expenses, WYDOT estimates the total cost will be $5.65 million. Teton County is on the hook for $537,350, a bit less than 10 percent of the total cost.
The new bridge is set to be complete next October. It’s planned to have just two piers in the water, rather than the old bridge’s nine. A separate pathway is also in the plans.
“The contractor has set an aggressive schedule,” Hammond said, “and hopes to have the new bridge open ahead of the completion date.”