Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge

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About This Kool Project

Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge arose from the ashes of a burned historic bridge in September of 2013, in Kalona, Iowa

Nels Raynor, Julie Bowers and Jim Schiffer teamed up to restore the Bunker Mill Bridge in the fall of 2013. Now we are nearly done with all truss repairs, moving on with stringers and decking once we have secured necessary funding. Workin' Bridges is the contractor and NSRGA the owner of the bridge in collaboration with Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge® (FBMB) a group of locals who refused to let their bridge be demolished by the Washington County Engineer. The bridge, an 1887 King Iron Bridge 119' Pratt Through Truss is eligible for the National Register of Historic Places and, when finished, will continue to span the English River for generations to come.

May. 12, 2016

The thing is, business and staying in business, being insured and working to a future are hard things to do. This is true especially when a bridge looks so finished, and yet isn't, and has not yet been inspected. To leave it wide open was not the intention. To honor all of our agreements, even when that honor isn't the popular opinion, is the only course we have.

Our goals have not changed, a premier bridge park in Iowa that used the correct techniques to finish it to our restoration requirements. It requires money to finish. NSRGA / Workin' Bridges just invested a whole lot of money in getting the bridge this far, hoping that we could entice others to help us finish it so we can open.

We learn from each of these projects and we take what we learn to the next and put it back to work with present projects. We wanted to be done at Bunker  Mill Bridge so we could move on completely to other projects, but we are content to stay the course, knowing that the construction site is buttoned up so no one can hurt themselves, until we can get back there to finish. Our schedule is open if a major donor wants to come on board.

In the meanwhile, it is spring and flooding happens. Thanks to D&N Fence Company out of Cedar Rapids for persevering through some major harrassment. Contractors, I know, understand. And we understand why the public thinks it is strong enough to play on because it looks awesome, everything spot on so far. Here's to the finish.

As always, donations are tax deductible. 

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Julie
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