It has been approximately eight years since the Boca del Rio Bridge has been constructed. It serves the developing community and booming tourism sector on North Ambergris Caye and is a vital infrastructure for the island. Today, the bridge is in dire need of repairs.
Listening to the concerns of some residents who say that the bridge is structurally unsafe and needs to be replaced, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Deputy Mayor Severo Guerrero paid a visit to the structure on Saturday, April 14, 2012, along with contractor and engineer of Medina’s Construction who was responsible of erecting the bridge.
After close inspection from above and below the bridge, it was determined that it is very safe and not at the brink of collapsing. Medina stated that the supporting structure and overall integrity of the bridge is strong and safe but repairs do need to be undertaken on both the pedestrian walkways and main vehicle passage.
Island conditions, including climatological factors, have played a direct role in the deterioration of the material of the flooring of the bridge and have caused the closure of the east section of the pedestrian walkway. Salt air has completely corroded the metal and has made that section of the bridge impassable and unsafe.
Only few major repairs jobs have been conducted on the structure since it was built and Medina suggests that it needs much more maintenance than what it is receiving presently. With the recommendations of the engineer, the San Pedro Town Council will commence repairs immediately, as materials are ordered and become available, to make the bridge safe for the daily commuters.
It is not expected for the bridge to be closed down anytime soon, work should commence in the next couple of months, but routine maintenance is expected to start immediately. Medina stated that simple and routine maintenance is key in extending the life span of the bridge. Mayor Daniel Guerrero assures that the safety of the bride is a major concern of his and much work will be conducting on it and the neighboring areas of Boca del Rio Park to make it a much more pleasant area.