The Wisconsin Department of Transportation has announced a plan to repair the Leo Frigo Bridge along Interstate 43, which would allow the bridge to reopen in January 2014. The bridge has been closed since Sept. 25, when a pier unexpectedly sank two feet.
The span, located in Green Bay, carriers an estimated 40,000 vehicles per day. Its closure has resulted in detours for traffic heading in both directions.
State DOT Secretary Mark Gottlieb announced a construction plan that calls for the permanent repairs to be completed by Jan. 17, 2014. He said the bridge will reopen to traffic sometime in January, if the repairs proceed as planned.
State engineers announced that Pier 22 sank as the result of corrosion to the pier’s pilings due to the unique soil conditions surrounding them. These same conditions are found from Pier 21 to 25 and all of these piers will be repaired.
New pilings will be installed at the bases of the five piers and will be protected from the corrosive soil conditions. The state DOT will then install temporary support towers on either side of Pier 22 to prevent any further sagging and protect workers as they work on the permanent repair. Those towers are expected to be in place by early November.
While the Wisconsin DOT has determined that five piers need this extensive repair, the investigation is also continuing for all of the bridge piers.