VOLGA, W.Va. (WBOY) — The beginning stages of the restoration project on the Carrollton Covered Bridge are underway. When the work began on July 11, traffic could continue after work hours Monday through Friday. After assessing the bridge during clean-up work, bridge workers decided that, because of the type of work that needed to be done, and for driver’s safety, it would be closed through all hours of the day until the project is completed.

The closure is marked at the beginning of Carrollton Road.

West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH) workers said drivers should be aware of this change and find an alternate route to travel. The average daily traffic for the bridge was 250 people per day, according to the WVDOH. Many travelers use this bridge to go to Audra, and they should plan in advance for this road closure.

“We knew that we would possibly have to shut it down; we knew that from the beginning. We had hoped to be able to keep it open in the evenings outside of work hours, but you know, as I said, as we started working on it and cleaning it up, we realized very quickly we need to just go ahead and shut it down,” said Chad Boram, WVDOH District 7 Bridge Engineer, “Just to make sure, just a safety precaution to keep it closed and allow us to do some of the things we need to do that would interfere with traffic driving through the bridge.”

The restoration work is being done by the WVDOH District 7 bridge forces. Boram said this is not generally the case for a project of this nature, and that the work is usually done by an outside agency. He also said the workers are excited about the opportunity to do this work on one of the historic covered bridges in their district.  

See the current progress on the Carrollton Covered Bridge as of July 14

“And if there’s a period of time where we can open it up for the evenings, or for some period of time, depending on where we’re at with the project, we will certainly try to accommodate the traveling public as much as we can,” Boram said.

The restoration was expected to cost $1 million at the start of the project, and Boram said trying to estimate how long the project would take to complete is difficult, due to the nature of this repair.

The historic bridge was originally built in 1856 but was severely damaged in an arson attack in 2017.