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The Blue & Gray Press | August 21, 2019

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Bridge not falling down

By MAGGIE KARRS11754772-bridge-connects-umw-with-eagle-landing

Despite rumored student concerns about the Eagle Landing Bridge’s stability, the University of Mary Washington’s administration stated that any height difference on the sides of the bridge has been present since the bridge’s construction in 2010, due to the entrances of the bridge being higher than the middle of the bridge.

Some students expressed concerns about the water that collects on the lower middle section of the bridge when it rains.

“The purpose of a covered pedestrian bridge is to keep us dry, but whenever it rains, all the water pools to the middle of the walkway,” said freshman E-B Davis.

The slight height difference of the entrances to the bridge causes water to pool in the middle of the bridge when there is rain accompanied by wind. To equalize the height in the bridge, the sidewalks on either side of the bridge would have to be ground down and replaced.

“That was like that on day one,” said John Wiltenmuth, associate vice-president of Facilities Services. “There are a few leaks in the awning, and the Eagle Landing side is a little higher than the campus side, meaning any sort of western wind combined with rain will leave water on the bridge.”

Though the bridge did suffer some cosmetic damage during the earthquake that struck Virginia in the summer of 2011, the bridge was found structurally sound upon inspection. The cost was too great for the school to fix superficial problems.

“It’s like a scratch on your car,” Wiltenmuth noted. “It’s superficial and might irk you, but it doesn’t affect how your car runs.”

The Eagle Landing Bridge is inspected every two years by Engineering Consultant Services. The last inspection was in fall 2011 and it will be inspected again this fall.

“I don’t think the bridge is going to collapse anytime soon,” said sophomore English major Courtney Rampey.


  1. Tempest

    The fact that UMW did not bother to implement even a rudimentary drainage system upon completion of the bridge is appalling and only further solidifies UMW’s consistent failure to conduct appropriate engineering studies and necessary structural analyses as exemplified by Eagle Landing’s interior construction gaffes and the Alvey/Arrington repair costs exceeding their demolition after just 19 years of existence.

  2. Kiss From A Rose

    Let me tell you, as a person who moved into Eagle Landing early and dealt with it’s… growing pains, that building was a travesty of construction. That banner they hung up that said something like, “358 Days. On budget. On time.” or whatever was something of a dark joke among us for a long time.