CTH TT "Cobban Bridge" Update

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Cobban Bridge Closure

 August 2, 2017

RE: CTH TT – Cobban Bridge


The County Highway TT Bridge over the Chippewa River, known as the Cobban Bridge, will be closed effective immediately due to safety concerns with the bridge’s fracture critical steel components. Annual bridge safety inspections were performed on July 19 and 20, 2017. At that time, slight changes to the bridge condition were documented. These changes were reviewed by bridge engineers from the Federal Highway Administration and Wisconsin Department of Transportation, with the recommendation being that the County consider closing the bridge. County Highway Commissioner Brian Kelley, with input from on-staff licensed bridge inspectors and the County Administrator, has made the decision to close the Cobban Bridge.

The Chippewa County Highway Department will be conducting further analysis of the steel bridge members and reviewing further options. At this time, there is no scheduled date to re-open the bridge.

Chippewa County has submitted an application for Federal replacement funds to construct a new bridge at this location, however a decision on funding is not expected until this Fall. No construction date is scheduled at this time.

The Highway Department appreciates the public’s cooperation in keeping all motorized and non-motorized traffic off of the Cobban Bridge. The County understands the inconvenience this causes for many area residents, however the safety of our citizens is the County’s top priority. Any questions regarding this work can be directed to the Chippewa County Highway Department at (715) 726-7914.


If there are any questions regarding this press release, please call Brian Kelley at (715) 738-2613 or Frank R. Pascarella at (715)726-7981.

Brian M. Kelley, PE   -   Highway Commissioner

Frank R. Pascarella   -   County Administrator


Past Updates  


New Vehicle Height Restriction for Cobban Bridge

Chippewa County is lowering the vertical clearance on Cobban Bridge. Starting on May 11, 2017 vehicles taller than 8 feet will not be able to cross Cobban Bridge. This restriction is being implemented to keep oversized and overweight vehicles off the bridge for safety reasons and to extend the life of the structure. Cobban Bridge is currently also restricted to one way traffic, a speed limit of 5 miles per hour, and a weight limit of 6 tons (one car at a time).


Public Involvement

Chippewa County, in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, held public involvement meetings on January 5th and 6th, 2016 in Cornell and Chippewa Falls to discuss a location study of the Cobban Bridge. The purpose of these meetings was to discuss detailed study alternatives and their impacts, and the selection of a preferred alternative.

Below is a link to the presentation that was given at the public involvement meetings. If you have comments or questions please contact the Chippewa County Highway Department at (715) 726-7914.

Cobban Presentation 1-6-2016

On March 8, 2016 the Chippewa County Board of Supervisors voted to endorse Preferred Alternative 1B Modified for the replacement of the Cobban Bridge as shown in the following link to the adopted resolution.

Chippewa County Resolution 08-16

On July 17th, 2017, Chippewa County, in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, held another public involvement meeting in Chippewa Falls to discuss further updates about Cobban Bridge.

Cobban Presentation 7-17-2017


For more information, contact:

Fred M. Anderson, PE

Chippewa County Highway Department


(715) 738-2610


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