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Study names five Shelby County bridges some of the worst in the state

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. -- Tens of thousands of Memphians drive over them every day, but how do our bridges in Shelby County compare to others? A recent report names a few of our bridges as some of the worst in the state, calling them “structurally deficient.”

What does “structurally deficient” mean? It doesn’t mean they’re unsafe, but rather characterizes their needs for repairs and funding.

The second worst in the state, when it comes to highly traveled bridges, is the one on Interstate 240 westbound off Airways Boulevard.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation says the bridge’s biggest problem is the beams, which saw some repairs back in 2015.

“That doesn’t completely surprise me, only because the amount of traffic that rolls over it or under it or through it, getting to and from the airport," said Tom Bosch who often visits Memphis for business.

Right behind it on the list, is the bridge on I-240 westbound near Lamar Avenue. The beams, backwall and deck are all chipping.

What these two top bridges in Shelby County have in common is they both average about 102 cars per minute.

Three other Shelby County bridges also made it on the list of heavily traveled and structurally deficient.

The state estimates repairing all the bridges could cost $9 billion.

The majority of these bridges were built in the 1960s, with one over Nonconnah Creek being built in the 1930s.

For the full report, go here.