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WALTON COUNTY, Fla. – Feb. 28, 2023 – Beach Operations has completed reconstruction of the pedestrian bridge on the multi-use path along Highway 30A near Van R. Butler Elementary School, and it’s again open for use by nearby students, residents and visitors.  

The bridge was damaged in late December when a concrete truck drove over it, making the structure collapse and almost flipping the vehicle over.  “It wasn’t designed for an 80,000-pound truck to drive on,” said Paul Hinton, beach maintenance manager. 

Beach Operations crews rebuilt the concrete bridge with wood instead. Hinton said the plan to replace the bridge’s material was a strategic choice to discourage operators of heavy vehicles from assuming the structure will support their weight. He is hopeful a wooden bridge will present a different message. 

The new pedestrian bridge was built with numerous support posts and heavy materials to make it safe and strong, according to Hinton. “It still isn’t designed to support a concrete truck, but it will support just about anything else,” he said.  



The bridge and connected path are used by hundreds of people daily to walk, run and ride bikes on, so repairing the damage quickly was a priority, according to Hinton. Reconstruction began Feb. 8, and Beach Operations crews spent hundreds of hours to complete the project within a week and ahead of schedule. 

During the reconstruction, Beach Operations created a temporary path for everyone to safely use. “The school children, they have a running program, so they go up the path and they would cross that bridge,” said Hinton, adding the community also benefitted from having a safe and organized lane for passersby while the bridge was down.

In addition to construction and maintenance of the multi-use trail, Beach Operations is responsible for: beach maintenance, construction/maintenance of regional neighborhood beach access facilities and beach re-nourishment projects. Funding for these projects comes exclusively from a tourist occupancy tax, or bed tax, which is collected from visitors on short-term rentals of six months or less. Click HERE for more information about Beach Operations services and projects.