Wilkes Bridge repairs could begin next week

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Work to repair the Wilkes drawbridge on Cowan Road could begin as early as next week. Emergency funding was just approved Tuesday by Transportation Commissioners in Jackson.

The bridge was stuck in the up position for several hours last week during the afternoon, and then again for a short while Tuesday morning.

Mississippi Department of Transportation officials said the work will be done at night and will require workers to do repairs underneath the bridge. They say computer and hydraulic systems are at the heart of the problem.

MDOT Spokesman Kelly Castleberry said Coast Guard regulations require them to open the bridge for marine traffic, so there remains a chance the draw could get stuck again between now and when the repairs are complete.

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