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Meeting addresses Clifton Hollow bridge plans

The public is invited to a public informational meeting 5-7 p.m. July 29, at the River Falls Public Library, 140 Union St., about plans to replace the County Road F bridge over the Kinnickinnic River. The bridge is about five miles west of River Falls near the Kinnickinnic State Park.

The Pierce County Highway Department and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation host the meeting.

Plans are to replace the 40-year-old salt-damaged two-lane Clifton Hollow bridge in the next few years.The project is in the federal environmental review process, and the earliest it could be started is 2011, said Pierce County Highway Commissioner Chad Johnson.

"We're hoping it doesn't wait until 2012," he added.

According to local highway officials, County F is the most heavily traveled county road in Pierce County. The average traffic volume in 2006 was 2,900 vehicles a day. The 20-year projection is 4,600 vehicles per day.

Former highway commissioner Ross Christopherson said frequent use of salt to cut ice on the slopes has led to damage on the lower side of the bridge.

The project will cost about $5 million. The federal government will pay most of that. Pierce County's share is $1 million.

A variety of exhibits and maps will be displayed during the meeting. Representatives of the county Highway Department, WisDOT and the design consultant, Short Elliot and Hendrickson, will be available to discuss the project and answer questions.

Persons who are unable to attend on July 29 may contribute comments by contacting project manager John Beckfield, SEH, 421 Frenette Drive, Chippewa Falls, WI 54729. Beckfield's phone number is 800-472-5881 and his e-mail address is