$24.6 million Bob Michel Bridge project nearing completion

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Chicago Construction News staff writer

Work on the Bob Michel Bridge rehabilitation, a $24.6 million project condensed into one construction season is nearing completion.

“Our extraordinary workforce is putting on the finishing touches — the final installation of expansion joints and pavement markings — but this bridge will be fully operational before we ring in the new year,” said Gov. JB Pritzker. “This has been a nearly $25 million investment in the future of Peoria, delivering the smooth and safe transportation experience that Illinois families deserve.”

The Bob Michel Bridge carries approximately 17,000 vehicles a day on Illinois 40 over the Illinois River between Peoria and East Peoria, with both communities experiencing thriving commercial and retail revitalization along the riverfront.

In March, it was closed for construction of a new deck, a first since the bridge opened in 1993. The project also included structural repairs, modernized traffic signals and drainage improvements.

Also, narrow sidewalks on both sides of traffic were consolidated into a 14-foot-wide path protected from traffic with a concrete barrier. New LED lighting was installed to improve visibility and safety.

Construction is expected to wrap up with the bridge reopening in mid-December.

“On behalf of the 17,000 union construction professionals and over 300 partner contractors I represent, we appreciate opportunities provided by the Rebuild Illinois Capital plan championed by Leader Gordon-Booth, Senator Koehler and Governor Pritzker,” said West Central Building & Construction Trades Council Executive Director Clinton Drury. “The eight month project to reconstruct the Bob Michel bridge provided thousands of work hours to local construction professionals and local contractors, stimulating the local economy.

“Projects like these provide real opportunities for the younger workforce to enter the trades and hone their skills, while also employing seasoned journeymen and women. Our members take great pride in building central Illinois and the Bob Michel bridge rehabilitation is a great example.”The $10 million rehabilitation of the Illinois 17 bridge to the north in Lacon was completed in November. The ongoing $167 million replacement of the eastbound McClugage Bridge is anticipated to finish in 2025, with the signature 650-foot-wide arches expected to be moved from the river and into place later this month. One of the first projects under Rebuild Illinois, the $42.2 million redecking of the Murray Baker Bridge, was completed in 2020.

Work on the Bob Michel Bridge rehabilitation, a $24.6 million project condensed into one construction season is nearing completion.

“Our extraordinary workforce is putting on the finishing touches — the final installation of expansion joints and pavement markings — but this bridge will be fully operational before we ring in the new year,” said Gov. JB Pritzker. “This has been a nearly $25 million investment in the future of Peoria, delivering the smooth and safe transportation experience that Illinois families deserve.”

The Bob Michel Bridge carries approximately 17,000 vehicles a day on Illinois 40 over the Illinois River between Peoria and East Peoria, with both communities experiencing thriving commercial and retail revitalization along the riverfront.

In March, it was closed for construction of a new deck, a first since the bridge opened in 1993. The project also included structural repairs, modernized traffic signals and drainage improvements.

Also, narrow sidewalks on both sides of traffic were consolidated into a 14-foot-wide path protected from traffic with a concrete barrier. New LED lighting was installed to improve visibility and safety.

Construction is expected to wrap up with the bridge reopening in mid-December.

“On behalf of the 17,000 union construction professionals and over 300 partner contractors I represent, we appreciate opportunities provided by the Rebuild Illinois Capital plan championed by Leader Gordon-Booth, Senator Koehler and Governor Pritzker,” said West Central Building & Construction Trades Council executive director Clinton Drury. “The eight month project to reconstruct the Bob Michel bridge provided thousands of work hours to local construction professionals and local contractors, stimulating the local economy.

“Projects like these provide real opportunities for the younger workforce to enter the trades and hone their skills, while also employing seasoned journeymen and women. Our members take great pride in building central Illinois and the Bob Michel bridge rehabilitation is a great example.”

The $10 million rehabilitation of the Illinois 17 bridge to the north in Lacon was completed in November. The ongoing $167 million replacement of the eastbound McClugage Bridge is anticipated to finish in 2025, with the signature 650-foot-wide arches expected to be moved from the river and into place later this month. One of the first projects under Rebuild Illinois, the $42.2 million redecking of the Murray Baker Bridge, was completed in 2020.

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