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From left to right: Texas County Collector/Treasurer Tammy Cantrell, county resident Kevin McGowan, Melissa Dunn with the Texas County Sheriff's Department, Connie Thompson with the Cass Township, residents Leanne and James Sigman, Cass Township President Jack Watson, Texas County District II Commissioner Linda Garrett, Cabool City Administrator Ron Scheets, Associate Commissioner John Casey, Robert Miller, Presiding Texas County Commissioner Fred Stinger, project engineer Jason Sivils, Mike Mineer, Texas County Baptist Director of Missions Paul Posey, Terry Trautman with MDC, Rose Ward, Gerry Elliott with MDC, Megan Hammer with Sen. Claire McCaskill's office, Jeff Crites with MDC, Chirs Ely with MDC, Texas County Memorial Hospital CEO Wes Murray. (ORN Photo)

(Houston) – Landowners, residents, and officials from the Missouri Department of Conservation and Texas County were on hand Thursday for a ribbon-cutting for the bridge on Route RA over the Big Piney River near the Baptist Camp Access.

The bridge, which fell into disrepair and lasted well beyond its scheduled life, was a 10-foot wide low-water crossing bridge that would regularly flood during heavy rains. The bridge also posed a risk to travelers who may be traveling by bus to a nearby summer camp, or to other river accesses in the area.

Jason Sivils with Great River Associates of Springfield, who helped design the new bridge, told the assembled crowd Thursday that a majority of the $624,000 cost for the bridge was allocated through the federal government’s Off-System Bridge Replacement Program, also known as the BRO Program:

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That program is funded by the Highway Transportation Fund, which is paid for by the gasoline tax.

The new, structurally sound two-lane bridge is 190 feet long with guardrails on both sides. The bridge was also raised, and now allows for canoe traffic on the river.

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