UPTOWN — The "structurally deficient" viaducts at Wilson and Lawrence Avenues in Uptown will be renovated, the Illinois Department of Transportation has announced.
Friday, IDOT announced $4.2 million in state funds will be released for the project, which will also require federal funding.
“The Lawrence and Wilson bridges provide a vital connection between communities and the lakefront,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “These repairs will deliver safer travel along and under the bridges, allowing for residents to better enjoy Chicago’s beautiful lakefront as they walk, bike or drive to the beach.”
The viaducts are both on the list of "most traveled structurally deficient bridges in Illinois," according to the American Road and Transportation Builders Association.
About 8 percent, or 2,243 bridges in the state, are structurally deficient, meaning one or more of the bridge's key elements,"such as the deck, superstructure or substructure, is considered to be in 'poor' or worse condition," according to the association.
"The primary issue is with the superstructure of those two bridges. ... They are both in either poor or serious condition," said Eileen Houlihan, spokeswoman for the association.
Both bridges were built in 1933 and are crossed about 100,000 times per day by motorists, according to the report.
The projects, which will cost an estimated $8.4 million, include removing loose concrete, repairing concrete beams and other necessary repairs, IDOT said.
A timeline for when repairs would begin was not immediately available.