MDOT announces lane restrictions for Niles bridge work

Published 9:42 am Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT — 

Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT — Traffic on Main Street Bridge in Niles will be reduced to one lane beginning Wednesday for bridge painting, according to MDOT.

Now that the weather is beginning to get warmer, the Michigan Department of Transportation will begin finishing up work on the Niles Main Street Bridge that was not completed last year.

Chris Jacobs, MDOT engineer, said workers would begin applying bridge-sealing paint to the concrete on the bridge on Wednesday, weather permitting.

Jacobs said traffic on the bridge will be reduced to one lane during the day, but would return to two lanes at night.

The work is expected to continue for two weeks with lane closures each day.

Workers also began planting trees and doing other landscaping work around the bridge on Monday.

The Main Street Bridge officially opened to traffic in December after the completion of a $10-million plus MDOT-led project to replace the former bridge, which stood for 90 years.

The bridge replacement project began in October of 2014 and took approximately 14 months to complete.

Improvements to the new bridge include wider sidewalks and lookout points on either side of the bridge, which spans the picturesque St. Joseph River.

Niles residents voted for the bridge to have arched railings reminiscent of the bowstring bridge that stood in Niles from 1868 to 1919.

Hundreds of people attended the opening of the new bridge during a ceremony Dec.