Based on a ksdk.com article, the Illinois Department of Transportation declared on September 29, 2009 that the Martin Luther King. Jr. Bridge will be entirely closed for up to 12 days starting on October 12, 2009. A representative of Illinois’ Department of Transportation stated that the construction project was initiated by a recent road safety evaluation conducted on the bridge. While the bridge is off-limits to commuters in both Illinois and Missouri, the article stated that the following work will be done:
- A concrete barrier will be placed in the middle of the bridge to divide oncoming traffic.
- Guard rails will be redone.
- The bridge will be re-striped.
- Four lanes along the bridge will be rearranged into three lanes.
Although some residents greatly rely on the bridge as a part of their every day commute, developing a new itinerary is definitely worth the efforts that will be made to help reduce the risk of head-on collisions on the MLK Bridge. It is possible for the repaired bridge to open sooner than expected if weather conditions prove to be non-threatening. Taking note that the contractor of the operation gets a $50,000 bonus for each day the bridge opens early, let us hope that this incentive does not cause any work to be rushed and therefore improperly carried-out.