MARQUETTE - The Champion Street bridge in the city of Marquette will be closed for much of the summer, as crews work to paint and resurface the structure, which spans U.S. 41.
The project, which was scheduled to begin today, is being undertaken by the Michigan Department of Transportation and is intended to extend the life of the bridge.
"(MDOT) will be resurfacing the driving surface and improving that," said MDOT spokesman James Lake. "And when we say painting, it's more than just painting."
A project to paint and resurface the Champion Street bridge, seen here along U.S. 41 in Marquette, began this morning. The work will close the bridge and temporarily reroute highway traffic from time to time. The project is scheduled to continue through August. (Journal photo by Matt Keiser)
Crews will work to remove corrosion and old paint, and will seal the metal surfaces of the bridge. The resurfacing will also help to preserve the metal portions of the structure.
In addition to closing the bridge, the project will also alter traffic patterns on the highway. Workers will be accessing the bridge from beneath and lanes will be temporarily closed.
"There will be lane closures for a significant portion of the work," said Lake, who added that at any given time, at least one lane will be open going each direction.
At times, large eastbound trucks will be unable to enter downtown Marquette via the Front Street roundabout.
Detour signs and message boards will direct the trucks to either Washington or Grove streets.
The Champion Street bridge was first constructed in 1963. Since the bridge was built by MDOT at the time U.S. 41 was constructed beneath it, the organization is responsible for its upkeep, according to Lake.
The project is set to wrap up by the end of August.
Kyle Whitney can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.