I-90 bridge construction starts Monday - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

I-90 bridge construction starts Monday

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DRESBACH, Minnesota (WXOW)-- After more than 10 years of planning, construction on the new I-90 bridge which crosses the Mississippi River at Dresbach is set to begin Monday.

The existing bridge was built in 1967 and is at the end of its life span. So the Minnesota and Wisconsin Departments of Transportation teamed up with a $187.5 million plan to construct a new bridge and Highway 61 and I-90 interchange.

"It's really been fun," said Terry Ward, project manager for the Minnesota Department of Transportation. "It's kind of a unique project to have a state line, basically in the middle of a project. And you have different requirements and different agencies on each side. So, that has been at some times a little challenging, but at the same time very exciting and very rewarding."

In the first year the project won't cause many traffic delays and Interstate 90 will remain open during the entire four year project. However various ramps will be closed for months at a time.

"The bad news is we're going to close the movement from La Crosse to La Crescent, westbound 90 to southbound 61. That ramp will be closed for an extended period," Ward said. "The other ramp we're going to close is northbound 61 to eastbound 90, that'll be closed for three to four months."

The new bridge will be equipped with structures to support a bike and pedestrian path, though there is funding to build the walkway yet.

"There's been some feasibility studies done," Ward said. "That's the extent of that effort in terms of he bike trails."

The new bridge will also improve traffic safety, capacity and access on and between Highway 61 and I-90.

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