NORFOLK — Traveling through Norfolk is getting easier.
The City of Norfolk announced in a news release today that the inside lanes, turn lanes and approaches to businesses on or near the East Norfolk Avenue Bridge will be open by the close of business. The road was still shut off at 4:00 on Friday. The outside lanes will remain blocked off as construction on the sidewalk, lighting, curb and gutter continues. Remaining work on the bridge will take place with the bridge open to traffic.
City Engineer Steve Rames says the completion of the project will benefit the city for decades.
“It’s going to provide a very sound chunk of infrastructure there between Cottonwood and First Street for the next 40 years or greater,” Rames said.
Construction began on the bridge in late February. Crews closed it off to traffic on March 30th. The $5.7 million project includes a new bridge, a new trail underneath the bridge and a new roadways section from First Street to Cottonwood Street.
Rames says one of the greatest challenges with the project was accommodating the businesses in the area.
“It certainly had an impact on the businesses in the area. So (it was a challenge) working with the businesses to develop detours into their accesses,” Rames said.
Rames said work will continue over the next two-three weeks with the focus on the sidewalk, the trail underneath the bridge, river bank stabilization and installation of street lights. The contract states the work must by done by November 19th.
A ribbon cutting for the bridge project will be held at a later date.