Daily lane closures will be required, starting with the westbound bridge until May 6, when inspections begin on the eastbound bridge. Inspections on both bridges are expected to be complete by May 11. The closures will take place between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday and Saturdays, if necessary. A minimum of two lanes will remain open while inspections are taking place.
The I-80 westbound bridge received a rating of 2 out of 9 in the Superstructure and Structural Evaluation categories from its most recent inspections, with the superstructure flagged to be in critical condition that may possibly require its closure. The eastbound portion received a 3 out of 9 rating in the Structural Evaluation category from its own recent inspections.
According to IDOT, the inspections are being done in conjunction with an upcoming yearlong maintenance project on both bridges. Any additional issues discovered during the inspections will be addressed once construction begins in the field later this summer.
The larger project, currently under contract, involves steel repairs and bearing replacements. The process for fabricating new parts has already begun, with work on the bridges expected to start in June or July. The repairs will be taking place under both structures, with any necessary lane closures scheduled at night to avoid disrupting traffic during the daytime hours.
The project will be finished next summer.
Source: Illinois DOT