DENVER (CBS4) – A contractor who built a bridge for RTD’s commuter rail is tearing it down shortly after it completed it because testing indicated the bridge couldn’t withstand the 60 years of use it was designed for.

Approximately 506 feet long, it flies north over Interstate 70 from Union Station to a location southwest of the Interstate 25 interchange. It will be rebuilt.

The contractor, Denver Transit Partners, said during its quality assurance process, which includes testing and inspections, it became clear the bridge couldn’t be in service for the six decades it was expected to last.

“If it were one thing, we could have fixed that, but there were a myriad of different variables — kind of that perfect storm that came together,” Laura Rinker with Denver Transit Partners said.

The contractor says that despite the teardown and rebuild, it’s still on schedule for a 2016 completion date.

Neither RTD nor taxpayers will pay for the demolition and reconstruction. The contractor will absorb the costs into its profits.

Rinker said she didn’t know how much the bridge tear-down and reconstruction would cost the company because it doesn’t track costs on a bridge-by-bridge basis. There are 35 bridges included in the project, Rinker said, so the impact to Denver Transit Partner’s budget is minimal.

“It’s such a large project. It’s zero impact,” she said.

 

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