A bridge replacement project this fall will affect travel along I-196 in Grand Rapids.
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is scheduled to begin a $ 100 million full-scale structural replacement of the east and west I-196 bridges on Market Avenue SW above the Grand River.
The eastbound section closure will be in effect from October 2022 to July 2024. During this time, traffic may exit Market Avenue SW as well as enter the Lake Michigan Drive NW and First Street NW ramps.
The proposed detour will pass through traffic eastward on the M-6 and then northward on US 131.
After the eastbound bridge is completed, the westbound I-196 bridge will close from August 2024 to November 2025. Two travel lanes for east and west traffic will remain open on the new eastbound bridge at this stage of the project. .
According to MDOT officials, the goal of replacing the bridge is to increase the overall safety of the bridges, which were built in 1961. It is in line with the Federal Highway Administration’s statewide initiative to replace scour critical bridge foundations. in 2038.
“The bridges are nearing the end of their service life,” said Mike Wilson, Grand Rapids TSC project manager for MDOT. “We want to increase the safety of the bridge’s overall properties and increase the long-term reliability of the corridor.”
The proposed plans for reconstruction include seven spans for each structure, three traffic lanes for each bundle and full shoulders along the bridges. The work will include aggregate trails laid on the Grand River.
Due to the location of the river project, officials obtained permission from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and complied with environmental regulations. This includes relocating endangered mussels and stopping work that affects the riverbed from mid -April to June each year.
The project was made possible through funding from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Rebuilding Michigan.