According to WGEM.com, all the underwater work for eight drilled shafts on the new $60 million Champ Clark Bridge has been completed and crews are now focusing on the concrete substructure. The next phase of construction will be the piers in the water.
The bridge spans the Mississippi River along U.S. 54 and connects the city of Louisiana, Missouri, to the state of Illinois.
“We test the shaft for its integrity and make sure there’s no voids or anything,” T.J. Colombatto, project manager for Massman Construction, told the news agency, adding that the community has rallied behind the project. “A lot of the communities we go into see the construction as a hindrance. This community, they love it. They’re so happy to get a new bridge.”
The new bridge will have wider lanes, making it safer for drivers. Plus better infrastructure means better commerce and economic opportunities.
“As a transportation hub of the country in Illinois, most of the product that moves from one side of the country to the other, 80 percent of it moves through Illinois,” said Hal Smith, Springfield director for Congressman Darin LaHood, according to the news outlet. “The better our roads and highways can be, the more jobs we will have. ”
The project is expected to be completed by fall of 2019.