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Red Wing Bridge construction pace accelerates as weather improves

Mark Anderson

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.

Spring weather seems to have settled in and the Red Wing Bridge project is making progress in various areas, while all of the region has awaited the Mississippi River levels to drop.

We're hopeful this month that we will be able to see the last span of tub girders placed on the bridge. This is the center span across the navigational channel, so the contractor will be working with authorities on timing as soon as river levels lower.

READ MORE: Red Wing Bridge

There are nine pieces that need to be connected and placed between Pier 1 and 2. Because of the flooding on the Wisconsin side, the latest plan from our contractor, Zenith Tech Inc., is to have the individual tub girders delivered to the Minnesota side in the upper harbor in Red Wing, assemble them and then bring them to the construction zone via barge. There, a crane will be ready to lift and place the girders into place. There are three rows with each row assembled from three pieces.

Meanwhile work to complete Third Street has begun. Crews were doing work on underground electrical for the work for street light system. From there they will work on sidewalks, curb and gutter, before moving to the final grading and paving. Weather has slowed work in the past, so we're hopeful that this month's weather is more agreeable to all of the construction work that needs to take place.

Nearby, crews have been working on retaining walls near ADM, Red Wing Shoe and the area. Concrete crews have been preparing for the work on bridge decks on the bridge over Highway 61 as well as the slip ramp at Red Wing Shoe.

Crews are expected to pour the decks later in the week of May 13, if weather cooperates. There will be alternating lane closures on Highway 61 during that time to adjust to the areas where concrete is being poured in order to maintain safety on traffic below.

Clean up the ditch on May 15 to clean up rock debris that came down from the bluff during the most recent freeze/thaw period, which was more unusual than past years. Lane closures will be in place while that work takes place.

And as our weather continues to improve, check in with the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce, who will be helping coordinate bridge tours again.

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/.