8th Street Closure
Bridge Replacement Project
Beginning January 6 crews will close 8th Street from Van Buren Avenue to Kelly Drive to replace the bridge over the Big Barnes Ditch. Traffic will be detoured around the project using Van Buren Avenue to US 34 to North Taft Avenue.
The current bridge was constructed in 1971. In 2016, state bridge inspectors found the outside bridge girders in critical condition and in need of repair. Due to the inspection findings, the bridge was posted with a limit of 5 tons and barriers were installed to keep traffic away from the deteriorated girders until the bridge could be replaced.
The City’s contractor will begin construction in January, by removing the old bridge girders, construct new abutment walls behind the existing one, then remove the existing abutments and place new girders. Once the structural components are completed, new bridge deck, sidewalk, railing and approaching roadway will be built on top. The new bridge will have one lane of traffic for each direction along with a bike lane and sidewalk on each side of the structure. The Big Barnes Ditch will be re-lined with concrete paving within the construction limits.
The bridge replacement project and the stormwater line installation along Wilson Avenue must be completed in the winter months when the ditch is dry. Funding requirements for the projects demand completion by the end of 2020, however the City anticipates the road to be open by the end of June.