Canopy Construction to Have Minor Traffic Impact at Sault Ste. Marie International Bridge
May 15, 2015 — Customers can expect intermittent nighttime lane closures from May 19 to 21 during the next phase of the Sault Ste. Marie International Bridge toll plaza reconstruction project.
Motorists should expect brief periods of all toll traffic being stopped in order to allow placement of six massive steel columns to support the toll canopy roof structure being constructed as part of the $8.9 million (USD) project. The intermittent toll lane closures are scheduled to start each night at about 11 p.m. beginning Tuesday, May 19, and be complete before 6 a.m. each day. The toll lane closures are not expected to exceed 45 minutes.
Each column will have a long steel beam welded to the top, forming a frame. A large crane will lift the frames into place and set them on foundation base plates next to each of the six new toll booths.
“We’ve worked closely with the contractor, DeVere Construction, to develop a placement plan that will maximize customer and staff safety while minimizing customer inconvenience,” said Karl Hansen, project engineer for the International Bridge Administration (IBA). “Five of the massive 17,000-pound column and beam frames must be lifted and set into place next to active traffic lanes.”
Hansen said all toll traffic will be stopped, as a safety precaution, when the crane swings each of the frames into place and the contractor secures the columns to the base plates. The work has been scheduled at night when traffic volumes are low, in an effort to reduce customer inconvenience.
The construction process also will require daytime toll traffic to be temporarily reduced to one lane in each direction, tentatively from May 25 to 29. The exact dates of the daytime lane closures will depend on the contractor’s progress, expected daily traffic volume and weather. The entire canopy structural steel and metal deck is expected to be complete by May 29.
“This schedule is dependent on weather, as well as unknown difficulties the contractor might encounter in this process,” said Hansen. “We will routinely post up-to-date information on toll lane traffic plans and the short-term closures on www.twitter.com/saultbridge and on our website at www.saultbridge.com.”
The IBA strongly encourages customers to check for the latest updates before they finalize travel plans.
Phil Becker, International Bridge Administration, 906-635-5255, ext. 112, or 705-942-4345, ext. 112
Dan Weingarten, MDOT Office of Communications, 906-485-6322, ext. 136