WICKER PARK — Crews will again be working around the clock to remove a bridge this weekend, as the city continues work on the Bloomingdale Trail, a 2.7-mile elevated walking, jogging and cycling path that will run through four Chicago neighborhoods.
A four-block stretch of Ashland Avenue between North and Armitage avenues will be closed to traffic as crews remove a century-old railroad bridge that crosses the much-anticipated trail, which is the centerpiece of The 606 "rails-to-trails" project, expected to be ready for use in the fall.
The unused bridge is being removed because the trail will eventually end at Ashland.
Crews will begin at 8 p.m. Friday, working to "complete the process as quickly and efficiently as possible," with Ashland expected to reopen no later than 5 a.m. Monday, officials said.
Traffic, including CTA's No. 9 Ashland bus, will be detoured east to Elston Avenue via North and Armitage avenues.
Pedestrians and bicyclists will be detoured west to Marshfield Avenue.
This weekend's work marks the third stage of bridge improvements related to the Bloomingdale Trail construction.
Once the bridge is removed, it will be placed in an adjacent work yard just north of Walsh Park, where it will be cleaned, assessed for structural integrity and painted.
While a 48-hour work period has been estimated, the street may be opened sooner if work is completed ahead of schedule, officials said.
Earlier this month, work on the previous two bridges was completed ahead of schedule, with Western Avenue at Bloomingdale in Logan Square reopening on Saturday and Milwaukee at Bloomingdale reopening on Sunday.
While work on the previous bridges kept some residents awake, officials said that residents living near the bridge "may hear some noise," though it is "not anticipated to be as loud as work at Western or at Milwaukee, as no pneumatic devices are required."
Barring unforeseen issues, the bridge that was formerly over Ashland will then be moved into place at Western during the weekend of April 18-20.
The new repurposed bridge at Western will replace the bridge demolished earlier in the month.
For weekly updates about the project, visit the606.org/category/newsforneighbors/.