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Lake Junaluska Bridge Now Open

 

The bridge over the Lake Junaluska dam is now open to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

In 2016, the bridge closed to vehicular traffic due to deterioration of the bridge’s steel support beams. In 2017, the Lake Junaluska Board of Trustees voted to restore the bridge to vehicular and pedestrian traffic and construction, done by RCF Construction, began in April 2018.

A combination of charitable giving and service charges from property owners at Lake Junaluska is paying for the project. Lake Junaluska received over $700,000 in charitable gifts toward the bridge over the dam.

Renewal of the bridge:

  • Promotes healthy lifestyles by maintaining the full loop of the walking trail
  • Makes it possible to drive completely around the lake
  • Restores one of the lake's historic landmarks
  • Preserves these important experiences for future generations
Bridge Open

Bridge Opening Celebration

A Bridge Opening Celebration took place on Friday, October 19. More than 250 people gathered at Lake Junaluska to celebrate the reopening of the bridge over the dam. The celebration included a ribbon cutting, a blessing of the bridge and a celebratory walk across the bridge led by the drumline of the Tuscola High School marching band.

Completion of the iconic bridge’s reconstruction finished ahead of the originally anticipated October 1 open date. According to Director of Public Works Jack Carlisle, final costs came in 30 percent below budget at $835,000 as opposed to the original estimate of $1.2 million. 

Bridge over the dam opening celebration

Ways to Give

  1. Make a Gift
  2.  

Mail: Lake Junaluska Development Offi­ce
PO Box 67, Lake Junaluska, NC 28745

Phone: 828-454-6749

 

 

Project Updates

July 17, 2017: Deconstruction of the bridge began in July. RCF Construction began removing the lower level of the roadway to provide access to the concrete beams that support the steel I-beams. The pedestrian walkway will remain open, though may be closed temporarily at times. Safety netting has been erected for additional pedestrian security.

September 22, 2017: Surveyors will access portions of the infrastructure under the dam, requiring temporary removal of decking. The surveying will give further insight into the restoration needs of the bridge.

February 14, 2018: We are waiting on approval from the state to begin construction. Once the approval is received, we anticipate a construction timeline of between 3-6 months. 

April 4, 2018: Lake Junaluska has received the necessary approval from the state to begin construction on the bridge over the dam. With no unanticipated delays, we plan to have the bridge open this fall. Read the full story HERE

September 17, 2018: The bridge is opened to vehicular and pedestrian traffic ahead of schedule!

October 19, 2018: A Bridge Opening Celebration is held and includes a ribbon cutting, a blessing of the bridge and a procession led by the Tuscola High School marching band drumline.