At least the northbound section of the Prince Street overpass is closed until further notice, according to City Manager Joe Thomas.
“As far as I understand it, it’s the only the northbound lane,” Thomas said. “I haven’t talked to the Department of Transportation so I don’t know what their intentions are.”
A press release from the Clovis Police Department stated the Clovis Police Department was notified by the New Mexico Department of Transportation at approximately 4:30 p.m. Dec. 10 the Prince Street overpass bridge is being closed due to an approximately 6-inch gap opening up in the roadway deck in the northbound lanes of the bridge deck, causing a possible hazard to vehicles and motorist crossing over the bridge.”
As of 5:30 p.m., only he northbound section of the four-lane bridge was barricaded.
The bridge is being closed by NMDOT as a precaution until a state bridge inspector can respond to evaluate the structural integrity of the roadway and bridge span, the release said.
A voicemail and email left for a DOT spokeswoman seeking comment were not returned.
The NMDOT is responsible for the maintenance of the Prince Street overpass, Thomas said.
From June 2008 to November 2010, the Hull Street overpass was closed and rebuilt over safety concerns. Before it closed, the overpass handled about 4,000 vehicles a day.
The city was responsible for the $3.4 million project with assistance from the state.
Thomas said the most immediate impact of the overpass closure is to emergency response vehicles, which will be forced to use alternate routes.
According to the CDP press release, alternate routes include the Hull Street overpass bridge between Brady Avenue and Grand Avenue or the Norris and Mabry Drive railroad crossing.