NO. 4 Bridge: Lesner Bridge

 

The aesthetic lighting features served as the most appropriate finishing touch for the completion of the 1,575-ft dual-span structure which the surrounding community wanted to serve as a signature bridge—a gateway to Virginia Beach. The new segmental concrete bridge carries U.S. 60/Shore Drive traffic over the Lynnhaven Inlet and replaces the original John A. Lesner Bridge, which was classified as structurally deficient and functionally obsolete due to its location in a highly corrosive coastal environment in addition to the population growth experienced in coastal Virginia.

“We could not afford to have a bridge that’s been there for almost 50 years be subject to potential weight restrictions,” Christopher J. Wojtowicz, P.E., construction bureau manager with the Virginia Beach Department of Public Works, told Roads & Bridges. “We were doing annual bridge inspections, and we saw the sufficiency rating going down to a point where it was going to be very costly to do retrofits to the existing bridge.” The possibility of a new structure did not only provide the city with the opportunity to replace the bridge, but to also add pedestrian and bike accommodations across a new facility—improvements that would serve to enhance mobility in the region.

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