Thursday, March 3, 2016

Torrence Avenue over Grand Calumet River

Bird's Eye Veiw
(Bridge Hunter, Historic Bridges, Satellite)

Illinois Department of Transportation once again demonstrates that it evidently gets bigger kickbacks from companies that build replacement bridges than from companies that maintain existing bridges. I learned in a Facebook posting, that this 1938 bridge was blown up March 3, 2016 so that it can be replaced.
Screenshot of a video
You have to wait almost a half-minute for the boom in this video, but the camera was upwind and you can see that the truss remained relatively intact.

(Update: another video of the "boom.")

I think it is ironic that the Grand Calumet River is so much smaller than the Little Calumet River. Obviously, they did a lot of dredging of the Little Calumet River as part of the 9-foot navigation channel project. It is probably more accurate to say they dug a canal that happened to follow the path of the Little Calumet River.

I feel sorry for the people that use Torrence Avenue to commute to the Ford Plant. The road was severed for about two years by the CREATE GS13 project, Now this bridge was closed May, 2015 and its $13 million replacement is not expected to be done until summer 2017. (DAinfo)

Bird's Eye View
Roger Deschner's comment on the Bridge Hunter page linked above indicates that if IDOT was willing to maintain truss bridges, a $13M expenditure and the inconvenience of an outage lasting more than two years could have been avoided:
A practically identical Pennsylvania truss bridge over the Cal Sag at Archer Avenue is in much better condition, despite carrying heavier traffic including more trucks, and in fact was just repainted.

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