Ribbon-Cutting for Mohican State Park Cable Pedestrian Bridge Held Today
LOUDONVILLE, Ohio (May 19, 2021) — A ribbon-cutting was held today for the Mohican Cable Pedestrian Bridge at Mohican State Park in Loudonville, Ohio. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources commissioned the roughly $840,000 design-build project, which was executed by teaming partners The Righter Co. and Woolpert. The project took less than a year to complete.
The Mohican Cable Pedestrian Bridge is a 120-foot-long suspension bridge that traverses the Clear Fork River, which has been designated as a State Scenic River. The bridge connects the Hemlock Gorge Trail with the recently restored Gorge Overlook Trail on the south side of the river and links the park’s campgrounds to new and existing trails, as well as additional scenic views.
“This has been a real passion project for our park staff at Mohican State Park,” said ODNR Director Mary Mertz. “The bridge links people to one of the most commanding views Ohio has to offer. I am excited to see the memories people share on the bridge and at the overlook for years to come.”
The new bridge replaces the original suspension or “swinging” bridge at the site, which washed out more than 50 years ago. Woolpert Structural Engineering Lead Tom Less said the new bridge was designed to include a stair tower to elevate the north side, keeping the bridge safely 10 feet above the water surface. Less said Woolpert specializes in complex design and addressing non-standard bridge design issues. This is the second Woolpert-designed suspension bridge to officially open this month.
“A suspension bridge is not like your normal highway bridge that everyone can do. You have to take a different approach that requires a lot of creativity within engineering principles,” Less said. “There’s not a guide for this, and it takes working through the engineering and math. We don’t shy away from creating the out-of-the box structures that people want. We try to incorporate a sense of adventure that will make these bridges a destination amenity.”
Less said executing these bridges also requires excellent collaboration between designers and contractors throughout each project to ensure safe and efficient constructability.
“Righter is an outstanding partner,” Less said. “They have a long history of expertly performing non-standard construction projects. In addition to suspension bridges, they build a lot of our covered bridges.”
One challenge discovered during construction was accessing the south side of the bridge. A temporary bridge had to be built under the proposed suspension bridge to deliver construction material, such as concrete for the foundation and timber towers for support. The temporary bridge also was used as a work platform to raise and place the preassembled deck panels of the suspension bridge.
“Now that it’s complete, we can take pride in knowing that we created a bridge that will be enjoyed by the owner and the public and that was equally fun to create,” Righter Project Manager Jacobi Schmalenberger said. “We have enjoyed every project where we have teamed with Woolpert. They are helpful, provide unique and effective solutions, and are quick to address issues and questions as they arise.”
Mohican State Park is located about 65 miles northeast of Columbus and comprises more than 5,600 acres of state park and forest. The park also is home to one of the oldest ultramarathons in the U.S., The Mohican Trail 100, and hosted the first U.S. Track and Field Ultramarathon National Championship in 2005.
About The Righter Co.
The Righter Co., Inc. is a diversified general contractor that has completed hundreds of projects throughout the State of Ohio, and surrounding states. The company is pre-qualified by the Ohio Department of Transportation for bridges of all types (ODOT level 3), culverts, earth retention, water and wastewater treatment plants, earthwork, grading, deep sewer and/or excavation, general building construction and demolition. The company has constructed bridges, roadways, water/wastewater treatment plants, storm/sanitary sewers, waterlines, piling, earth retention, new buildings, and renovations of existing buildings. Our clients include Federal, State, County and local governments, along with many private industry owners. For more, visit rightercompany.com.
Woolpert is the premier architecture, engineering, geospatial (AEG) and strategic consulting firm, with a vision to become one of the best companies in the world. We innovate within and across markets to effectively serve public, private and government clients worldwide. Woolpert is an ENR Top 150 Global Design Firm, recently earned its fifth-straight Great Place to Work certification and actively nurtures a culture of growth, inclusion, diversity and respect. Founded in 1911 in Dayton, Ohio, Woolpert has been America’s fastest-growing AEG firm since 2015. The firm has over 1,100 employees and 42 offices in three countries. For more, visit woolpert.com.