GREEN BAY - The Leo Frigo Bridge over Interstate 43 closed more than a week and a half ago because of a dip in the roadway caused by a buckled pier.
Up to 30,000 cars and trucks typically use the bridge on Packers game days.
But with the bridge shut down and detours in place, Sunday was the first test for how the traffic patterns would merge.
The Department of Transportation spent much of last week warning drivers to leave early for the game at Lambeau Field.
And now that it's in the books, officials say drivers did their part.
The traffic heading to the stadium for tailgating and a matchup with the Lions was heavy as expected. But law enforcement say given the closure of the Leo Frigo Bridge, things went pretty well.
"Getting Packers traffic coming in a little sooner, hopefully we didn't have so much of an overlap of those conflicting traffic patterns all hitting each other at the same time," said Sgt. John Jones with the Wisconsin State Patrol.
Signs warning of the Leo Frigo Bridge closure were visible on I-43 and Highway 41. And many drivers heeded the warnings to leave early.
"We usually leave early to get up here and spend a little extra time in Green Bay, but we were nervous about what type of traffic we would run into," said Pete Samson of Slinger.
And those with the DOT say what they found wasn't as bad as many thought it would be.
"We saw backups on 41 and on 43, but that is expected. They weren't catastrophic and that is partially due to the fact that I think people did come early," said DOT Traffic Engineer Randy Asman.
A four-car accident on Highway 172 backed up traffic there well before kickoff. But with extra officers around the metro area and extra freeway service vehicles, the accident was quickly cleared.
The State Patrol brought in extra officers to help handle the increased traffic, but Jones says drivers' awareness helped keep things moving smoothly.
"When all those spokes of the wheel come together, this is the hub and what we have to do is get them around this hub and into the game, and from the game get them home," said Jones.
And while officials say they hope this will be a good sign for other games to come, Samson has a warning for those who might think they can wait longer next time around.
"Good luck, that's all I've got to say is good luck," said Samson.
DOT officials say they will meet next week to review traffic patterns from Sunday's game.
But they say they don't expect major changes to the plan.
They say they will continue to recommend drivers leave extra early if they're headed to Lambeau Field.
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