Work set for April 1 to replace Windsor Road bridge over I-57

CHAMPAIGN — Motorists on Windsor Road can expect reduced traffic starting April 1 as the Illinois Department of Transportation replaces the bridge that carries the road over Interstate 57 in Champaign.

Meanwhile, late night drivers on Interstate 57 will need to use detours on selected nights in April and probably in May as part of the same project.

Mike Carnahan, construction field engineer for the Illinois Department of Transportation, said the Windsor Road bridge will be removed and replaced with a new, wider bridge beginning April 1.

"The bridge was in our five-year program to be replaced," Carnahan said on Tuesday. "Last year the bridge was hit by a semi, causing damage to the bridge's south beam.

"We placed weight limits on the bridge as a result of the damage, and we moved up the project so it could be completed this year."

Carnahan said one lane of traffic will remain open on Windsor Road during the project.

"The lane will be a little bit narrower than motorists may be used to, and we'll put up temporary traffic signals on both sides of the bridge to allow vehicles to get across," he said.

Carnahan said the new Windsor Road bridge will continue to have two lanes for motor vehicles, but the state is adding six-foot-wide bike lanes and five-foot-wide sidewalks on both sides.

He said the project will also require detours for motorists using Interstate 57 on selected Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights in April and probably May between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Interstate traffic will be detoured during those periods using Monticello Road, U.S. 45, Springfield Avenue, Mattis Avenue and Interstate 72.

Carnahan said the state will announce the specific dates for the closures as they get closer.

"We will be taking the bridge down in April and setting the new beams probably in May, and there is no safe way to do that over moving traffic," Carnahan said.

The state estimates the project will be completed by Nov. 1, weather permitting.

O'Neil Bros. Construction is the contractor for the $2.3 million project.

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Topics (1):Road Work
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Bob Isahofferer wrote on March 20, 2013 at 9:03 am

Thank you very much for the bike lanes!

adams wrote on March 20, 2013 at 9:03 am

Speaking as a motorist, definitely not a bicyclist, thank you for the bike lanes. It was scary sharing the bridge with those things! 

Lefty wrote on March 20, 2013 at 11:03 am

The Bradley Ave bridge over I-57 needs the same treatment. It is only a matter of time before a cyclist or pedestrian is injured or killed. As housing expansion continues to the west, this problem will only get worse, compounded by the fact that there is very limited MTD service to the Sawgrass and Boulder Ridge neighborhoods.

pk1187 wrote on March 20, 2013 at 3:03 pm

I emailed Rodney Davis about the Bradley Ave bridge and urge everyone reading this to do the same. Maybe he can get us some money if more people email him. Not only is the overpass too narrow but it is falling apart as I type.

Lefty wrote on March 20, 2013 at 4:03 pm

Running or biking over the Bradley overpass is a high-risk undertaking, especially with the added element of cellphone distraction. I did it once or twice and just won't take the chance anymore. Thanks for suggesting Rodney Davis.

Amor wrote on March 20, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Bikers and pedestrians over that bridge would have been less a problem if the nearby Lincolnshire country club didn't always throw a fit over people using a 50 meter golf cart path to pass under the highway.  It was safer by far than taking the overpass. I guess this was long overdue anyways. 

trent_il wrote on March 20, 2013 at 2:03 pm

In complete agreement with other posters. I could not be more excited about this. I will be biking into town much more frequently (since it was scary as all get out before!) and feel so much better about the safety of other bikers, walkers, and runners when I'm driving (especially the kids I see who bike over the bridge and have no clue how dangerous it is!).

mankind wrote on March 22, 2013 at 9:03 am

This is a great project. My only complaint is that they're not making space for four lanes. Windsor is going to have to be widened in that section of town before too long.

jolivier23 wrote on April 01, 2013 at 9:04 pm

Glad to have the bike lanes.   I started riding my bike last year and that 200 yard stretch is not my favorite part.   I always just ride out in the middle of the lane to avoid having cars try to pass me without a real opening, thereby running me off the road.   It causes about 20 seconds of inconvenience if there is a car there but it feels a lot safer.   A bike lane will be wonderful.

doglips wrote on June 19, 2013 at 8:06 am

I'm sorry Amor, but your comment regarding allowing Lincolnshire Country Club to allow public access to their golf course is somewhat naive.  Persons on a golf course are subject to great risk, including death, from golf balls travelling in excess of 100 mph. This is especially so for children, who are generally unaware of this, and less cautious. Additionally, insurance carriers prefer to reduce their risk, so that LFCC's provider probably would not allow non members to pass through.  Your comment about "50 meters" is also incorrect, as they would need to pass directly in front of one of the teeing areas on the West side of I-57, under both bridges, and through a great deal of the course on the East side of I-57.