BIG SUR (CBS SF) — Caltrans crews demolished the third section of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge near Big Sur Wednesday afternoon.
It took engineers a few days to figure out how to bring down the section, probing at the concrete seams of the concrete pillar it stood on.
Over the weekend, crews took down the middle section known as Span Number Two. The demolition crew made quick work of the middle span.
They used large jackhammer like machine can you break apart the bridge, and let gravity take care of the rest.
The bridge was condemned after it was damaged in the recent winter storms. Caltrans officials said they hope to have the whole thing down by the end of the week.
The next big job is to haul the tons of debris out of the 100-foot-deep canyon. It will be treacherous work. The plan for now is to build some kind of road to get heavy equipment down there.
As for the design of the replacement bridge, it will not have columns, but instead will be a single steel span, stretching more than 100 feet across the canyon.
Typically a bridge of this size takes nine to 12 months to build. Caltrans officials said they are expediting the process here. They may have one lane open for locals only in less than 6 months.