SPOKANE, Wash.--Washington State Department of Transportation leaders announced Tuesday that a construction company from Spokane would rebuild the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River.
A portion of the original bridge collapsed on May 23.
Max J. Kuney Construction was awarded the $6.87 million contract to build the permanent fix for the bridge. WSDOT leaders said work will begin this week. The finished section should be ready for installation after the Labor Day weekend and before October 1st according to WSDOT officials. Installation of the new span could require a full closure of I-5 for up to two weeks.
Governor Jay Inslee announced that the temporary Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River will reopen Wednesday, June 19.
Governor Inslee and Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson visited the site to see what progress crews have made since a section of the bridge collapsed on May 23.
Construction crews have been working almost around the clock to complete the temporary span so I-5 can reopen to traffic.
The bridge serves the main corridor connecting Vancouver, B.C., and Seattle, and is used by approximately 71,000 vehicles a day.
Before the bridge was ready to reopen construction crews finished paving the surface, welding certain sections of the bridge, and tightening bolts. Divers will inspect the piers to ensure the bridge is safe for drivers.
When the I-5 bridge does reopen, it's likely drivers will see reduced speeds and weight limits. The temporary bridge section is narrower than the previous bridge. Two 11-foot-wide lanes will travel in each direction.
Once the temporary span is open, crews will begin work on a new permanent structure, work that will take place next to the current bridge.
The new permanent bridge should be completed this fall. Total costs for the temporary span and new, permanent bridge are estimated to be $18 million.