GREEN BAY - The sunken pier of Green Bay's Leo Frigo Bridge sank another quarter-inch over the weekend, the state Department of Transportation says.
The bridge has been closed since Sept. 25, when a dip was discovered in the roadway. One of the bridge's piers had sunk about two feet into the ground, the DOT says. Investigation revealed corrosion in pilings under the affected pier and some nearby piers on the east side of the bridge.
“We’re not sure why it settled any further,” said Kim Rudat with the DOT. “We suspect it’s both the work we did around Pier 22 and over the weekend we had quite a bit of rain that saturated the ground.”
Further sinking of Pier 22 was documented last Friday, when the DOT said it had sunk a half-inch. That was also when the agency said it would build support beams to keep the bridge stable. Today, the DOT said those beams could start later this week. There will be two towers, 55 feet from Pier 22 on each side.
Transportation officials say the investigation into the bridge could wrap up by Thursday. Right now, as a precaution, inspectors are looking at all 30 piers on the west side of the Fox River. Workers are also digging 11 wells in that area to monitor groundwater.
Meanwhile, the DOT also announced that the preferred detour route for freeway traffic is on highways 41 and 172. Crews plan to put up detour signs on the highways, directing freeway traffic to use the major highways to get across the Fox River.
“The traffic that wants to be on the interstate, I-43, now we’re just proactively signing 41 and 172 as that detour route,” said Randy Asman, a traffic engineer for the DOT.
"ALT 43" signs will then be removed from between Webster Ave. and Atkinson Dr. And the Main Street bridge in Green Bay.
The Leo Frigo Bridge carries Interstate 43 over the Fox River on Green Bay's north side.
“If there’s semis going downtown that we don’t need to go downtown, we want to make sure they stay on the highways of similar type, meaning 41 and 172, “ said Asman.
There is no indication as to how long the bridge will be closed. Around 40,000 vehicles used the bridge daily.
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