After closure for more than a year, the Milwaukee Street bridge in downtown Janesville will open Wednesday to one lane in each direction.
A Janesville city official on Monday said he believed that would be the case, and on Tuesday a state Department of Transportation official confirmed it.
In an email to The Gazette on Tuesday, DOT spokesman Michael Bie confirmed the DOT plans to reopen both lanes of the newly rebuilt bridge that spans the Rock River downtown.
That would restore traffic to a regular, two-way pattern on Milwaukee Street through the center of downtown for the first time since early October 2018, when the state shut down the bridge for its removal and replacement.
Construction of the bridge’s south railing and side façade remains on hold until river levels fall.
Bie wrote that crews have worked in recent weeks to get the bridge open to traffic even as part of the project hangs fire.
“The bridge will have a temporary concrete barrier wall located along the south sidewalk for the safety of motorists and workers. The roadway will remain open in both directions through the holidays,” Bie wrote.
Bie wrote that the DOT predicts high water for “several weeks” will prevent crews from removing forms under the bridge and forming and pouring the south bridge arches.
During that work, the DOT will close the eastbound lane on the bridge, but the westbound lane will remain open, Bie wrote.