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City nets funding for bridge engineering study

The state transportation department has designated $60,000 for the city to complete an engineering study on Evanston’s Bridge Street bridge over the North Shore Channel.

The bridge connects McCormick Boulevard with Simpson Street.

This funding program requires a 20 percent city match, amounting to $15,000.

Last year the Evanston Division of Transportation (EDOT) completed required inspections of all eight city-owned bridges.

The inspection showed that repairs are needed to the Bridge Street bridge’s footings and to protect them from future scour and erosion damage. The bridge’s expansion joints, sidewalks and approach slabs are also in need of replacement.

The Bridge Street bridge is a key link in the citywide bike plan connecting the Twigg’s Park Bike Path; currently in design by the Parks, Forestry and Recreation Department; and bike routes on Dodge Avenue and Simpson Street with bike trails along and across McCormick Boulevard.

The proposed bridge design will include a widening of the bridge to accommodate bike lanes and new ADA-accessible sidewalks.

Funding will be available July 1. The city plans to identify the most qualified bridge and roadway design firm to undertake the work over the next several months.

The tentative schedule is to complete the engineering study in early 2009, engineering design in early 2010 and construction by the end of 2010. The timeline for all phases are subject to funding approvals.

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