CHINATOWN — A major thoroughfare serving the South Loop and Chinatown is open again after about four months and $5.8 million in road work.
The 18th Street bridge over the Chicago River reopened Monday morning after repairs were completed, according to the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT). The 48-year-old bridge had been closed since December for repaving and installation of new sidewalk decks and lighting, among other improvements.
The bridge, which is used by 8,500 vehicles per day, is a welcome avenue for South Loop commuters already frustrated by delayed Roosevelt Road construction, said Tina Feldstein, president of the Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance. Drivers were detoured south to Cermak Road while the bridge was under repair.
"It was just really challenging," Feldstein said. "You had to go south to go west, so it was frustrating."
The project was funded by through the city's tax increment financing (TIF) program, and represents part of the $650 million in bridge improvement spending since Mayor Rahm Emanuel took office, CDOT said.
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