Lynchburg Construction Crews Overcoming Historic Obstacles

Lynchburg, VA- Crews doing CSO work around Lynchburg's Riverfront Park are having to take a history lesson so they can build the future. A couple of weeks ago we told you construction workers literally hit a wall while digging near Amazement Square. Now, they know which wall they hit.

Workers were stunned when their digging uncovered a six-foot-tall steel beam, right next to a stone wall. After doing some digging of a historical kind, they now know where those obstacles came from, and have a better plan of how to work around them.

Through the years, downtown Lynchburg has been a center of activity.

"They're very close to where Lynch's Ferry was. The early bridges over the James River, the canal came through there. And by the time of the Civil War, there were three different railroads that all ended downtown," said Doug Harvey, Director of the Lynchburg Museum.

Lots of activity means lots of history left behind for crews like these to discover. And, they discovered a steel beam from a railroad station.

"The old Union Station, that was an early railroad station there, built about 1880 and torn down about 1960," said Harvey.

Crews also found a stone wall left over from the Kanawha Canal.

"The canal wall we have decided to dismantle piece by piece, at least for the top few layers of the wall," said James Talian, CSO Program Manager.

Officials say the city is slowly making progress on its checklist for the historically hindered project. They've gotten permission from the railroad company, and have more background on what crews are dealing with. Now we arrive at the difficult task; crews have to cut through, dig out, and haul away a six-foot-tall, and who knows how long, steel beam."

"We're going to make one cut very near the end and we will take that end of the beam off as a whole and set it aside somewhere on site for now," said Talian.

As they remove that chunk of steel beam, crews will have to reinforce the ground where the beam was. Talian says they could have the beam removed as soon as next week. That section of the parking lot will be closed during that part of construction.

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