RED WING -- There may have been a time when you wondered if the work on the Red Wing Bridge would ever be completed. It’s been a lengthy process to get to this point, and now we expect work to be completed in October.

Much like a home project, painting is among the final tasks.

You’ve likely seen crews painting the tub girders of the bridge that span the river. The preparation work took time to assemble the structures under the bridge to allow the painting crews access to the bridge and to contain the paint. Once that painting is done, crews will be painting the piers.

It’s possible you recently encountered traffic slowdowns on the bridge during our flagging operations while crews were completing grinding and sealing work on the bridge deck. That got things prepared for final striping that you’ll see throughout the project. There will be some minor traffic delays when the striping work is done.

And now is also the time where we’ll be establishing turf around the project. Its primary role is to hold the soil and protect against erosion, but it also looks good as the trees, shrubs and grass are established.

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Pedestrian/bike crossing closed

Also be aware that the pedestrian and bicycle crossing on the bridge remains closed. Please do not utilize it until it’s open. It’s used for ongoing construction work and staging on the new bridge. If you are riding your bike across, please use the shoulder of the bridge. Work should be completed in October and there will still be time to venture across the bridge to enjoy the view and the fall colors in Red Wing. We thank you for helping us keep everyone safe.

Crews continue to work hard to get this project completed. Following guidance from state and federal health officials, and to prevent further spread of COVID-19, crews will maintain physical distancing practices while working.

This $63.4 million project is a strong partnership between Minnesota and the Wisconsin departments of transportation, the city of Red Wing, the Federal Highway Administration and our contractor, Zenith Tech Inc.

Red Wing City Engineer Jay Owens and I completed our final regular update on the Community Access Channel 6, so you can catch us there. It’s been another good way to help everyone stay connected. You can watch the replays on the city of Red Wing’s YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/user/CityofRedWing.

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/.

Mark Anderson is the MnDOT construction project manager for the Red Wing Bridge project. He can be reached at 507-205-6402 or mark.w.anderson@state.mn.us.