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An Information Guide to Duck Key in the Florida Keys
























Duck Key Bridge Update - March 2008


The Duck Key Property Owners' Association (DKPOA) is monitoring the County on the maintenance and inspection of Duck Key's five bridges. The communities' arched bridges are unique to the Keys and are part of our island's identity and lore. It would be a shame to see them allowed to deteriorate.

A March 2008 email from the Duck Key Property Owners' Association (DKPOA) President, Bill McGale, gave notice that

"Judy Clark from the Engineering Department of Monroe County plans to request that an engineering firm specializing in bridges be hired to evaluate the repair requirements of all five Duck Key bridges. She agreed to inform us as to when this item will be on the BOCC agenda, so that interested residents can attend the meeting.

Funding: Commissioner Murphy proposed an increase in the County's tax on gasoline with the revenue being used to pay for road and bridge repair. The proposal was rejected by a 3:1 vote. Ironically, funding for the proposed "walkway" bridges is currently available through accrued impact fees. We'll keep you informed as we petition the BOCC to reevaluate the effectiveness of any planned bridge work."


The main entry bridge onto Duck Key has experienced deterioration to the point of being designated "structurally deficient". The U.S. Department of Transportation, defines structurally deficient as meaning that

"significant load-carrying elements of the bridge are found to be in poor or worse condition due to deterioration and/or damage, or the adequacy of the waterway opening provided by the bridge is determined to be extremely insufficient to the point of causing intolerable traffic interruptions. A deficient bridge, when left open to traffic, typically requires significant maintenance and repair to remain in service."


The State of Florida has a searchable data base on its bridges which includes such information as when the bridge was constructed and its current condition. When a bridge is rated “structurally deficient,” it is inspected once a year and placed on a schedule for repair or replacement. It also may require extensive maintenance.


DUCK KEY'S FIVE BRIDGES - One is structurally deficient

The information below comes from the State data base and identifies each bridge, average daily vehicular traffic to cross the bridge, the bridge's location, when built and last inspected, and provides data on rating information.

In addition to identifying that the main bridge from US 1 onto Duck Key is structurally deficient this writer found it interesting to learn that some of Duck Key's canals have names. The canal that runs from Lake Lucille to the Bimini Drive Bridge is called Sam's Canal, and the canal that runs under the Harbour Drive Bridge is called Joe's Canal.

1. Un-named Bridge structure - number designation 904600 , Average Daily Traffic - 1609, crosses Tom's Harbor Channel from US 1 to Duck Key Drive, built in1967, inspected 2/7/2006, Sufficiency Rating of 46, Health Index of 49.37, NBI Rating - Structurally Deficient

This conrete bridge took the place of an older wooden bridge built in the 1950s.

Images of damage to entry bridge to Duck Key which is rated Structurally Deficient


2. Truman Bridge - number designation
904602, Average Daily Traffic, crosses un-named canal from Indies Island to Center Island, built 1955, reconstructed 1982, inspected 3/28/2006 Sufficiency Rating of 64.2, Health Index of 77.03 (State data base identifies this bridge as crossing a channel but the Truman Bridge actually crosses a man-made canal.)

3. Un-named Bridge structure - number designation 904603, Average Daily Traffic
- 539, crosses Sam's Canal from Bimini Drive on Center Island onto Plantaion Island, built 1955, reconstructed1982, inspected 3/28/2006, Sufficiency Rating of 71.7, Health Index of 73.91

4. Un-named bridge structure - number designation 904604, Average Daily Traffic - 517, crosses Joe's Canal from Plantation Island onto Harbour Island, built 1955, reconstructed1982, Inspected 3/28/2006, Sufficiency Rating of 72.4, Health Index of 73.65

5. Un-named Bridge structure - number designation 904606, Average Daily Traffic - 530, crosses un-named canal from Plantation's West Seaview Drive to Yacht Clubs East seaview Drive, built in 1955, recontructed1982, inspected 3/28/2006, Sufficiency Rating of 69, Health Index of 75.58



NBI - National Bridge Inventory will be used for preparing the selection list of bridges both on and off of Federal-aid highways. Highway bridges considered structurally deficient or functionally obsolete and with a sufficiency rating of 80 or less will be used for the selection list. Those bridges appearing on the list with a sufficiency rating of less than 50.0 will be eligible for replacement or rehabilitation while those with a sufficiency rating of 80.0 or less will be eligible for rehabilitation. To be considered for the classification of deficient bridge, a structure must be of bridge length, and had not been constructed or had major reconstruction within the past 10 years."

SD - Structurally deficient - The term "structurally deficient" means that the department believes a bridge should undergo a series of repairs or replacement within the next six years. The department's
policy is to repair or replace all the structurally deficient state owned bridges during that
time. The department also recommends that local governments follow the same schedule
for their structurally deficient bridges. The "sufficiency rating" is a tool that is used to help determine whether a bridge that isstructurally deficient or functionally obsolete should be repaired or just replaced. The sufficiency rating considers a number of factors, only about half of which relate to the
condition of the bridge itself. The sufficiency ratings for bridges are part of a formula
used by the Federal Highway Administration when it allocates federal funds to the states
for bridge replacement."

FO - Functionally Obsolete - The term "functionally obsolete" only means that a bridge does not meet current road design standards. For example, some bridges are "functionally obsolete" because they
were built at a time when lane widths were narrower than the current standard.

Health Index - The "health index" is a tool that measures the overall condition of a bridge. The health
index typically includes about 10 to 12 different elements that are evaluated by the
department. A lower health index means that more work would be required to improve
the bridge to an ideal condition. A health index below 85 generally indicates that some
repairs are needed, although it doesn't mean the bridge is unsafe. A low health index may
also indicate that it would be more economical to replace the bridge than to repair it.



Monroe County's Highway Department is responsible for the maintenance and repair of 28 bridges (the five Duck Key Bridges listed above and 23 of the bridges shown below). In all Monroe County has 42 bridges linking more than 100 islands. Three old bridges have been designated National Historic Sites : the old Seven Mile, Bahia Honda and Long Key Bridges. Driving along the Overseas Highway travelers will pass over close to 19 miles of bridges. It is estimated that about 15% of the travelers time will be spent crossing bridges.







Bridge # 900003 BOCA CHICA CHANNEL SR-5 (US-1) SB 11750 BOCA CHICA CHANNEL 1973 5/21/2007 94.4 85.97
Bridge # 900016 BAHIA HONDA SR-5 (US-1) S.B 9350 BIG SPANISH CHANNEL 1972 9/25/2006 68.9 84.85 SD
Bridge # 900045 BAHIA HONDA SR-5 (US-1) NB 9350 BIG SPANISH CHANNEL 1972 9/28/2006 52.8 84.71 SD
Bridge # 900047 US-1 & Jewfish Creek Canal SR-5 (US-1) 18600 Jewfish Creek Canal 1944 11/9/2005 46.3 67.11 FO
Bridge #
904025 Palm Avenue 15026 Garrison Bight 1965 12/20/2005 73 86.03 FO

Bridge # 904110 Boca Chica(CR-941) 592 Geiger Key Cut 1955 12/21/2006 24.8 33.93 SD County Engineer Dave Koppel has reported that repairs at the Geiger Cut bridge has been completed.

Bridge # 904120 CR 941- Boca Chica 2230 Similar Sound Local Cnl 1957 12/19/2005 45.2 63.92 FO
Bridge # 904140 Palm Drive 593 Bay Point Canal 1975 12/21/2006 36 86.84 SD
Bridge # 904260 Yellow Tail Road 261 Un-named Canal 1983 1/13/2006 90.1 94.16
Bridge # 904305 Watson Blvd Old 2060 Watson Cut 1960 1/12/2006 74.5 100 FO
Bridge # 904307 Fern Avenue 700 Joe's Canal 1960 1/12/2006 75.3 96.81 FO
Bridge # 904310 Watson Blvd 2060 Un-Named Channel 1965 12/27/2005 62.3 70.02
Bridge # 904320 Watson Road 2060 Bogie Channel 1967 10/21/2006 55 43.18 SD
Bridge # 904480 Ramp to Pigeon Key 101 Pigeon Key 1938 2/15/2007 2 75.95 SD
Bridge # 904908 VALOIS BLVD 282 CANAL 1995 3/27/2006 74.6 93.93
Bridge # 904980 CR 905A 3182 Steam Boat Creek 1968 8/17/2006 73.8 94.75
Bridge # 904982 Card Sound Road 3182 Tubbys Creek 1969 8/30/2006 76.5 89.52
Bridge #
904984 Card Sound Road 3182 Mosquito Creek 1969 8/30/2006 76.5 71.17

Bridge # 904986 CR 905A Card Sound 3184 Saunders Creek 1969 4/9/2007 21.1 82.23 SD
Bridge # 904990 Card Sound Road - I.C.W.W. Card Sound Road 3157 I.C.W.W 1969 2/28/2007 43.5 72.74 County Engineer Dave Koppel has reported that an ongoing year-long construction project on Card Sound Road will address the problems at the Card Sound Bridge and Saunders Creek Bridge.


Bridge # 900802 Bahia Honda Sandspur Bridge To SANDSPUR BEACH 250 Tidal Creek 1991 2/21/2007 90.5 98.52
Bridge # 900803 Curry Hammocks State Park Park Entrance Road 50 Little Crawl Key Channel 1967 8/23/2006 49.3 51.91 SD


Bridge # 904490 BOOT KEY DRAW CR-931 343 BOOT KEY HRBR (FRAC CRI) 1960 2/28/2007 22.2 67.47 SD





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