The Minnesota and Wisconsin departments of Transportation announced today they will accelerate the St. Croix River Crossing project by starting construction on the river piers for the bridge foundation in 2013.
That means construction is anticipated to begin on the bridge foundations in late-spring 2013. Previously, construction was planned to begin in spring 2014.
“We have been working on integrating the results of the load testing to make the project more efficient in terms of managing scope, schedule and budget,” MnDOT’s Project Director Jon Chiglo said in a news release. “By separating out the foundation work, we can start construction sooner, reduce inflation costs and create jobs a year earlier than scheduled.”
The $50 million contract will open for bids in late-winter 2013.
The St. Croix River Crossing project replaces the Stillwater Lift Bridge “with a safer, more reliable” four-lane bridge that will connect expressways on both sides of the St. Croix River according to MnDOT. The project adds extensive trail systems, including converting the Stillwater Lift Bridge to a bicycle and pedestrian crossing.
It also includes constructing three miles of four-lane highway on Highway 35 Wisconsin and reconstructing about three miles of Highway 36 and Highway 95 in Minnesota.
The four-lane St. Croix Crossing Bridge is estimated to cost between $280 million and $310 million. The total cost for the entire St. Croix Crossing project is estimated to cost between $580 million and $676 million.