Viewpoint: Red Wing Bridge construction concerns focus on flooding, schedule
Mark Anderson is the MnDOT construction project manager for the Red Wing Bridge project. He can be reached at 507-205-6402 or email@example.com. This column is scheduled to run at the first of each month.
As we watch more snow fall, we also know the calendar tells us spring is approaching. It means melting snow and rising rivers and it's something we monitor and make plans for as we look ahead in an important year for the Red Wing Bridge construction.
We continue to place and connect the steel tub girders. Thank you for your patience during the short traffic delays as girders were delivered to the Red Wing side. We're now on the Wisconsin side of the bridge and deliveries continue, but traffic delays should not occur because we have a larger area to deliver and maneuver the trucks.
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Spring will eventually arrive, and with it comes the melting and the opening of the Mississippi River shipping season. We are reviewing our schedule and options to ensure our construction schedule can stay on track. We'll have to make arrangements when the shipping season opens as we work with barges to complete the girder connections.
Flooding has the potential to occur on the Wisconsin side, so we'll be making sure our work schedule takes us to areas of the bridge that aren't affected by any high water. It's something we've planned for, but with weather, we don't know when it might occur or to what level.
Some of our early work this season will be on the city streets. We hope to complete the work on Third Street and Bluff Street. We also want to complete the new bridges over Highway 61 and Bluff Street. There will be more retaining walls built and the slip ramp will be finished.
This $63.4 million project is a strong partnership that includes the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, the city of Red Wing, the Federal Highway Administration and our contractor, Zenith Tech.
As part of our team's efforts, you will see Red Wing City Engineer Jay Owens and me together at various community events or on a bridge tour. We'd be happy to visit with your group or provide your organization or business with the necessary information about the project so you can keep your employees informed. We've found that if you know more about the project, you can help others understand it and minimize any possible disruptions it might cause. We do regular updates on the Community Access Channel 6, so you can catch us there as we provide updates and field questions.
We have a lot of good information that can help explain the project. You can learn more about the project or sign up for email updates by going to MnDOT's project web site www.dot.state.mn.us/d6/projects/redwing-bridge/ or you can follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/RedWingBridgeProject/.