Weeklong Sellwood Bridge closure under way - KPTV - FOX 12

Weeklong Sellwood Bridge closure under way

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A weeklong closure of the 87-year-old Sellwood Bridge will allow for a 1,100-foot-long truss span to be moved for a detour bridge.

Setting up the detour bridge will require the Sellwood Bridge to be closed to all users from 5 a.m. on Thursday to 7 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 24.

The actual move is expected to take 12 to 16 hours on Saturday, starting at about 8:30 a.m.

The extra closure days are needed to install road connections at each end of the truss span and complete an in-depth inspection of the detour bridge before it opens to traffic.

Moving it north will create space for the new Sellwood Bridge to be built in the alignment of the old bridge.

The detour bridge has several advantages compared to the original plan, which was to build the new bridge in two phases. The advantages include improved safety for workers and commuters, a savings of between $5 million and $10 million on the cost of construction and a decrease in overall construction time.

The 3,400-ton truss span will be one of the longest bridge parts ever moved. The age and shape of the truss combined with the curved path of the move make it a highly complex undertaking.

The detour bridge will carry motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians across the river until the new Sellwood Bridge opens in the summer of 2015.

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