The project consisted of the rehabilitation of a 100-foot steel thru-truss bridge constructed in 1910. The project’s primary objective was to restore the structural integrity while also increasing the load carrying capacity of the structure. The bridge is a vital pedestrian link between City Park and the downtown area of Valley City. KLJ worked closely with Valley City, North Dakota State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), and the North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) as well as other agencies to make sure project objectives were achieved.
KLJ, through close coordination with the City of Valley City, NDDOT, and SHPO, developed a rehabilitation plan that addressed the deficiencies while maintaining the historic look and integrity of the existing bridge, which is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Rehabilitation consisted of constructing a new pier and abutments, a new approach span, replacement of the concrete deck with a lighter timber deck, sandblasting and painting the trusses, and retrofitting the pedestrian rails to meet current safety standards.
The Elks Footbridge remains a vital link in Valley City. The rehabilitation retained the historic value of the bridge while complying with current safety standards. In addition, the change to a lighter weight timber deck increased the bridge’s capacity to support the weight of pedestrians and will help extend the life of the bridge. The bridge is included in Valley City’s Historic Bridges tour and is still eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2011, the North Dakota Society of Professional Engineers (NDSPE) selected the Elks Footbridge as Project of the Year. Project awards were selected based off of criteria set by NDSPE; criteria includes innovative engineering and application of existing technologies, benefit to society, aesthetics, project size and scope, and schedule.