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Bridge Replaces Stream Valley Span Washed Out by Tropical Storm

Long Branch Stream Valley Park Bridge

The Fairfax County Park Authority Board will join with members of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and residents from the Canterbury Woods neighborhood as a new steel bridge in the Long Branch Stream Valley Park is dedicated on Saturday, May 24, 2014 at 10 a.m. During Tropical Storm Lee, the existing 45-foot bridge was washed out, and is now replaced by a 60-foot steel frame bridge and concrete approach ramps.  The ribbon cutting ceremony will take place a short distance from the Canterbury Woods Swim Club located at 5101 Southampton Drive in Annandale, Va. Parking is available at that location.

In September 2011, Tropical Storm Lee caused severe flooding in Long Branch Stream Valley.  The water eroded the stream bank around an existing stream valley trail pedestrian bridge abutment causing the abutment to fail and the attached bridge to become unstable and unsafe.  The bridge is the only pedestrian crossing of the creek between Wakefield Chapel Road and Woodland Way, a distance of over one mile as measured along the stream valley trail. It connects friends, neighbors and communities on opposite sides of the stream. When staff inspected the damage, they found that the existing bridge needed to be removed and replaced with a longer bridge due to erosion. The stream banks also needed to be stabilized to prevent similar problems with future storms. The bridge itself was not damaged and was removed by the county and used to replace a rusted out pedestrian bridge in Willow Woods Park.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved $1.1 million from county funds in April 2012 to expedite the flood damage repairs at this location and six other park sites that suffered damage from the storm.  The county is continuing to pursue FEMA and insurance reimbursement of the costs of this flood damage.  Total project costs, which included improvements to a nearby gravel trail as well as the replacement and stream bank reinforcement, were $263,400.

For more information contact the Public Information Office at 703-324-8662.

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