How This Bridge Was Rebuilt in 15 Days After Hurricane Ian

The Sanibel Causeway was rendered totally impassable to automobiles. Less than a month later, it was open to traffic.
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Both Florida DOT and Superior Construction were reached out to for a comment on this story. FDOT refused to remark, and Superior Construction did not respond to multiple emails.

Barrier islands are critical to protecting mainland coasts by absorbing wave energy and bearing the brunt of storms. But development on the islands negates that critical purpose. That doesn’t mean the community doesn’t belong there. But it does obligate the planners and engineers involved in rebuilding to be thoughtful about the impacts hurricanes can have and how infrastructure can be made more resilient to them in the future.

Practical Engineering is a YouTube channel about infrastructure and the human-made world around us. It is hosted, written, and produced by Grady Hillhouse. If you enjoyed the video, hit that ‘like’ button, give us a comment, or watch another of our videos!

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This is not engineering advice. Everything here is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Contact an engineer licensed to practice in your area if you need professional advice or services. All non-licensed clips used for fair use commentary, criticism, and educational purposes.

Stock video and imagery provided by Getty Images and Florida DOT.


  1. Practical Engineering

    Thanks for the great year! What was your favorite Practical Engineering video of 2022?

  2. Fat Jons eating adventures

    It’s a gorgeous island and I’m sad it was hit so hard.

  3. Outdoor videos With Brad

    In my area they close down a bridge for years and I mean completely shut it down, but yet don’t work on it, I know they got money they just want people going the long way, or they work on perfectly good roads that don’t need nothing, didn’t the Romans build a 100 yard bridge in 10 or 12 days? and they can’t even do that now if they tried

  4. My ma lives on this island. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Looking forward to an interesting 2023 with P.E.!

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    As cei who live in ft myers… excellent and well done video sir !

  7. Like I always say if it needs to be done I CAN be done if only governments & officials get off their butts and get it done.

  8. Right on Grady. Your videos are very interesting, intelligent and content rich. I just subscribed. DOH! I should of after I watched the one you did on the Oroville dam in California. Any of you that have not seen it you are missing out, big time!

  9. A lot of rich folks live out there, that is why it was done so quickly.

  10. Easy, the bridge was in a state that has a Republican governor. If it was in a state with a Democrat governor, the rebuild would have taken at least ten years and cost billions of dollars.

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