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CHESAPEAKE---Hampton Roads is losing its battle with bridge maintenance according to some top local transportation authorities.

A new study shows a 50 percent increase in structurally deficient bridges since a similar study five years ago.

'We're not keeping pace with the maintenance, rehab and replacement of these bridges,' said Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization Deputy Executive Director Camelia Ravanbakht.

The term 'structurally deficient' may sound more dangerous than it actually is. The bridges are still drivable, they'll just require more frequent inspections and upkeep.

The study found that it will take an estimated $8 billion just to maintain the more than 1,200 bridges we currently have until 2040.

'We do have a funding problem and a funding crisis. We need money. We need money to take care of these problems, and that's very simple,' said Ravanbakht.

HRTPO engineer Robert Case also believes the problem is funding.

'It's going to be difficult to keep these bridges existing,' Case said.

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