NEAR WEST SIDE — After a two-year wait, will motorists driving east and west near Downtown be able to use the Harrison Street Bridge soon?
While work is nearing completion, Illinois Department of Transportation officials don't yet have an opening date for the bridge — a heavily-traveled link to the Near West Side and beyond. Last week, IDOT officials estimated that the bridge would reopen in April. This week, IDOT spokeswoman Gianna Urgo said that the bridge would reopen sometime this spring, weather permitting.
"We will alert the public when the bridge officially reopens," she said in a statement.
Meanwhile, a University of Illinois at Chicago campus announcement Monday said that the rebuilt Harrison Street Bridge would reopen this week.
Reconstruction work on the bridge — which runs over the Dan Ryan Expy. between Halsted Street and Desplaines Avenue — began in March 2014. While the bridge was originally supposed to be closed for six months, the east bridge is still not complete, and both sides of the bridge remain closed two years later.
The construction on the two Harrison Street bridges — a westbound bridge and an eastbound bridge — was done separately to allow open access to a city pumping station. The westbound bridge was completed in winter 2015 but has yet to reopen, IDOT spokesman Guy Tridgell sai.
While the Harrison Street West bridge work is complete, it will not reopen until the work on the east bridge over the Dan Ryan is also complete.
The completion of the entire bridge project was pushed back because of some delays with the West Harrison portion of the bridge and to allow for staging related to Dan Ryan and Eisenhower reconstruction work,Tridgell said.
Until the Harrison bridge reopens, motorists should continue to use the detour route along Van Buren, Racine, Jefferson and Clinton streets.
The overhaul is part of a $475 million revamp of that intersection — known as the Circle Interchange — that has been described as one of the worst bottlenecks in the country, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation.
Morgan Street ramp
The westbound Eisenhower exit ramp to Morgan Street is expected to re-open this summer, IDOT officials said.
After a two-year closure, the Harrison Street Bridge is set to reopen this spring, IDOT officials confirmed Thursday. [DNAinfo/Dave Newbart]
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: