White’s Bridge reconstruction hits delay

Ionia County

KEENE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — An unpredictable fall and logistical hiccups have delayed the long-awaited reconstruction of White’s Bridge for seven months.

The Whites Bridge Historical Society confirmed July 3 is now the target completion date.

“The Society encountered some setbacks along the way; initial estimates were off, resulting in additional fundraising to meet the goal…” an email to Target 8 read in part.

The hope was to wrap construction by Christmas. The new date is a few days before the seventh anniversary of the bridge burning down.

Most of the setbacks have to do with the uniqueness of the project, including finalizing designs, custom cuts to the timber and supply shipment delays.

“One of the two trusses is about 80% complete,” society president Tom Byle told News 8. “We had issues with the washers. They had to be by America with steel made in America, and the washers needed are in short supply, so they just got here a few weeks ago.”

Once the bridge is complete, it will be sealed with flame retardant, but the material can’t be added unless its above 45 degrees outside.

For now, the construction crew will work until snow becomes a problem.

You can follow any updates the historical society posts to Facebook on the “Rebuild Whites Bridge” page.

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