The Idaho Transportation Department will start work replacing a 78-year-old bridge over the Weiser River south of Weiser on March 4. Work on $4.8 million project on U.S. 95 should be done by the end of this year.
Traffic on the bridge during construction will be limited to a single lane, controlled by temporary signals at both ends of the structure. Drivers may want to use an alternate route, such as Oregon State Route 201 and the U.S. 95 spur.
Traffic volume increases on U.S. 95 on weekends, so electronic message boards, both on the side of the highway and overhead on westbound I-84, will be used to alert motorists of bridge restrictions. Crews plan to work Mondays through Fridays, but will be off the highway on weekends and holidays.
The two-lane bridge, one of 99 remaining on the state system built before 1936, will be replaced with a three-lane structure. An average of 7,300 vehicles use the bridge daily.
The existing bridge has a sidewalk and two 13-foot lanes but no shoulders. The new bridge will have two 12-foot lanes and a 12-foot center turn lane. The project features a two-foot buffer next to the decorative bridge railing, a five-foot shoulder and a five-foot sidewalk on the west side. No bike lanes will be included in the project.
In addition to replacing the aging bridge, crews also will reconstruct more than 650 feet of bridge approaches at the north and south ends.