Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Remove Images

Will bridge be done on time?
Opening set for this weekend, rain, shine

by Lisa Seiser

May 26, 2011

It's going to be close.

Months ago, the plan was for the Wrigley Drive bridge reconstruction to be completed in time for the Memorial Day weekend. Now, workers are scurrying to finish the work so the bridge can be used this weekend.

City Administrator Dennis Jordan said Monday night he was sure the bridge will be done in time.

Jordan reported on the status of the bridge work during the council meeting Monday. He said asphalt will be laid this week with the paving occurring on Wednesday or Thursday, depending on the weather.

It will take two days for the paving to dry, meaning the road and bridge should be open this weekend.

"The only way it will not be done is if it rains six straight days," he said.

According to the contractor's schedule, sidewalk and asphalt paving will occur today, while the landscaping, signage and pavement markings should be done on Friday.

Lake Geneva Mayor Jim Connors said he's not sure everything will be complete on the bridge, such as the landscaping and other details, but he's been told the bridge will be open for traffic this weekend.

Work on the Wrigley Drive Bridge, located next to the Geneva Lake Chamber of Commerce building, first started in October when the bridge was torn out. Since then, work continued through much of the winter and early spring.

In March, it was believed that a mid-May completion was on target. However, weather played a factor in the ability to complete the bridge by then.

The nearly $1 million bridge reconstruction is being funded mostly by the state Department of Transportation through federal stimulus monies approved in late 2009. According to the most recent information, the stimulus money will fund $933,000 and the city's portion will be about $50,000.

The reconstructed bridge is wider and includes a bike lane and pedestrian walkway. The underneath section of the bridge will still be arched, but slightly higher to allow personal watercrafts and other larger boats easier navigation underneath from the lagoon into the main lake.

On Monday, Alderman Terry O'Neill voiced some concern about the reworked intersection at Wrigley and Broad Street.

"It is my observation and I've been watching the construction and I think the corner there, they are making will only be a right turn year round," O'Neill said. "But it seems to be very wide. I think a large bus will have difficulty making that turn without going into the other lane. I think a fire truck will have to go into the other lane."

Jordan said the calculations were made and should be able to handle the trucks, but he will verify the design. He also said extra bricks will be used to create the island rather than just a concrete slab.