Newly built 40-ton ‘iconic’ arches collapse in downtown Hickory; road closed – WSOC TV

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Hickory, NC — The newly built arch, the centerpiece of the Hickory City Walk, collapsed around midnight Thursday night.

They fell into a pedestrian walkway, crossed Highway 127 near downtown Hickory and fell to Main Avenue North East. Police closed both areas.

In the Friday morning scene, the crew of Channel 9 was able to see a wooden arch decorated with lasers. Neighbors said it sounded like an earthquake when the arch collapsed overnight.

Arch was part of a 40-ton, million-dollar citywalk project in the city signed in June 2019. The two arches were installed downtown in 2021 and cost $ 750,000.

“I think this is representative of Hickory and embarrassing,” said resident Carmen Eckerd. “Now it’s just firewood for $ 750,000.”

There was no immediate information on how the arch fell, but Channel 9 contacted for more information.

Workers spent most of Friday morning securing the area around the two bridges.

By dawn, dozens of people had come to see what was left of the pedestrian bridge across Highway 127. Mayor Hankguez of Hickory spoke on the phone with Dave Fahati on Channel 9. Fortunately, no one was injured and Arch said it was still under warranty.

“I was very disappointed,” Guess said. “This was a symbolic structure that really made our city walk stand out. Every engineer, every expert, every architect-everyone agrees that this structure is safe and sound. did.”

The mayor said the arch was manufactured by the Oregon-based company Western Wood Structures. Their $ 500,000 or more price tag accounted for about 5% of the $ 14.3 million contract that Hickory awarded to the Neill Grading & Construction Company for city walks.

The Neill Grading and Construction Company sent a statement to Channel 9 confirming that it had a contract with the city of Hickory, but stated that it was not directly involved in the design or manufacture of the arch.

Neil Grading outsources the design and construction of pedestrian bridges, bridge end walls and decorative wooded arches to Dane Construction, and Dane Construction adopts decorative wooded arch designs for Western Wood Structures, Oregon. Said that it was outsourced. Neill Grading said that once the arch was manufactured and shipped by Western Wood Structures, Dane Construction installed the arch under the supervision of NCDOT’s third-party construction managers and inspectors.

The statement looks like this:

“Neill Grading and Construction Co., Inc has signed a contract with the city of Hickory to build a citywalk project as a general contractor. Neil designs and builds pedestrian bridges, bridge end walls and decorative wooded arches. Outsourced to Dane Construction.

“Dane Construction has adopted / subcontracted the design and manufacture of decorative wooded arches to Western Wood Structures in Tualatin, Oregon. Western Wood Structures has three approvals listed in the City Walk Project bid document. One of the completed companies. Dane Construction built a decorative wooden arch after being manufactured by Western Wood Structures and shipped to the project site. Installation is inspected with NCDOT’s third party construction manager. It was done under the supervision of the government and other organizations.

“Neil grading acts as a general contractor for the City Walk project, but Neil was not directly involved in the design, manufacture, or construction of decorative wooden arches. As a general contractor, we oversee the entire project, as well as Provides the construction of bridges and decorative wooden arches and the organization of traffic control measures for road closures and detours under construction. Neil and Dane are on site shortly after the wooden arches collapsed earlier this morning. Dane contacted Western Wood Structures in writing, notified the incident, dispatched engineers to investigate the site, and investigate what might have led to the collapse of the arch. I got it.

“We are also shocked and saddened that this happened, but we are very grateful that no injuries were reported as a result of the collapse. We are currently using it as the investigation has just begun. There are no details available. We will provide more details as they become available. “

Neill Grading and Construction Co., Inc “

According to the city, the arch is built to withstand winds of 100 mph.

The first arch was successfully lifted in March, but the crew stopped working after trying to lift the second arch. They said they heard a popping sound, so they reinforced and re-examined the arch before it went up in July 2021.

Hickory officials confirmed that last year’s debris problem was “fixed with glue, clamps, and a tapping screw.”

Sarah Tarbert travels around the city with her dog every day and says she misses the giant arch.

“I walk across it every day, sometimes twice a day,” Talbert said. “It’s sad to see a pile of rubble right now. I thought it was beautiful.”

Inspection of the bridge itself showed no damage. The mayor told Fahti that the arch is unlikely to be rebuilt, but may consider other options for the pedestrian bridge.

(See below: The Hickory City Walk project continues while the crew builds two arches)

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