TELLICO PLAINS, Tenn. (WATE) — The bridge at Bald River Falls in the Cherokee National Forest is slated for replacement in the spring of 2022, the Tellico Ranger District recently announced. When the work begins, the bridge will be closed to foot and through traffic.

In a project update posted in late June, officials said the primary reasons for replacing the bridge include structural stability, pedestrian safety, and enhanced recreation experiences. The waterfalls are a popular place to visit and swim. The bridge is part of the National Forest System Road (NSFR) 210, which passes through the Tellico River Corridor.

The current bridge spans Bald River at its confluence with the Tellico River; with pedestrians and vehicles sharing the bridge and traffic can be heavy. The replacement bridge will provide two-vehicle traffic lanes along with safe separation of pedestrian traffic and an observation deck.

Officials say when bridge replacement work begins in 2022, NFSR 210 will remain open to points below and
above the bridge at Bald River Falls – with no through traffic. The bridge and the area adjacent to it will
be closed to foot and vehicular traffic. Before bridge replacement work begins information regarding designated alternate/detour routes will be provided.