PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - The Steel Bridge will be closed to traffic for almost the entire month of August while crews upgrade the MAX system.

TriMet is calling the Steel Bridge MAX Improvements project its biggest upgrade to the 34-year-old light rail system to date.

During the project set to take place from Aug. 2 to Aug. 29, crews will upgrade the signal system, tracks, switches, and other components on and around the 108-year-old bridge.

The upgrade will improve reliability and keep trains running on time while reducing disruptions and delays, according to TriMet.

The Steel Bridge is one of the busiest connection points for the MAX system - 620 trains cross the bridge every day.

During the project, shuttle buses will get MAX riders across the Willamette River, though room onboard will be limited because of social distancing requirements.

TriMet says all MAX lines and five bus lines will be disrupted due to the project. Commuters could experience delays as long as 30 to 45 minutes.

While the Steel Bridge will be close to all automobile traffic, walkers and bikers will still be able to cross the bridge by using the lower deck pathway.

The project is expected to cost $17 million.

To learn more about the Steel Bridge MAX Improvements project, visit news.trimet.org/2020/07/steel-bridge-to-close-for-four-weeks-in-august-for-major-max-improvements/

Copyright 2020 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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(1) comment

Terrell Higgs

Why during the busiest time of the year? Granted traffic is less due to the virus, but no reason that this can't be done in the down season. Rain should not be a factor.

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