Neighbors split about plans to demolish 1916 bridge

Sandy Hook Bridge
Posted at 8:20 PM, Feb 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-11 22:30:31-05

SANDY HOOK, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Maury County bridge standing for more than 100 years is slated to be demolished, and a county is split on how they feel.

Some believe the bridge is dangerous. Others say there's too much history to lose with this unique structure.

"I was born and raised here in Sandy Hook," said neighbor Darryl Bassham. "Right by that yellow house is where I grew up. It's what they call the bottom. It's the bottom of Sandy Hook."

All these familiar sights are what Bassham loves about his Sandy Hook community. Nothing is more familiar than the Sandy Hook Bridge. It was built in 1916.

"I grew up playing on and around that bridge," Bassham said.

If you try to drive down it today, you'll be met with roadblocks.

"Aw, I couldn't believe it," said Bassham. "That was a shock. I didn't think it'd went that far."

At the request of the Maury County Highway Department, TDOT said the bridge will be removed due to advanced concrete deterioration and its poor condition. TDOT added the arch bridge clogs during heavy rain and adds to upstream flooding.

Some neighbors told NewsChannel 5 they want to see it gone because of those flooding concerns. Other neighbors said the roads to the Sandy Hook community have hills, and they believe an ice storm might trap them in their homes without the bridge to cross.

Even with the Maury County Commission voting to remove it, for a neighbor like Bassham, the connection to this bridge runs deep.

"It's a big part of everybody's lives around here," he said. "I actually thought about having my ashes sprinkled when I'm gone off that bridge. I appreciate everyone fighting for the bridge. We need all the help we can get."