Final pilings pending for U.S. 95 bypass

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SANDPOINT — Traffic on Bridge Street will be intermittently reduced to a single lane until Tuesday due to work on a 66-foot-long span of the future U.S. Highway 95 bypass.

Crews will be removing the aluminum overhang brackets which were used to hold forms in place for the new roadway over Bridge Street. The lane closures will be in effect from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

At the east end of the Cedar Street Bridge, the last lengths of piling for the Sand Creek Byway are scheduled to be driven in the coming week, according to Parsons RCI, the project’s lead contractor.

A piling subcontractor will drive 76 pilings for an eventual stair tower that will connect the pedestrian path on the east side of creek to the east end of Cedar Street Bridge. There will also ultimately be an Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant ramp in this location.

Work will also continue on the 1,037-foot-long mainline bypass span over Sand Creek and the 512-foot-long parallel span that will serve as the southbound off-ramp into town.

“That is where the mass of our work is going on,” Parsons project manager Shane Webley said of the pedestrian structure and bridges.

Work at the northern end of the project in Ponderay will pick up in the spring, when Parsons begins habitat mitigation work at the current turnoff for U.S. 95 North.

Traffic will be shifted east off the current alignment and onto parts of the new alignment, including the new 299-foot-long bridge over Highway 200. Parsons is forecasting the traffic shifts for May or June.

As soon as weather conditions allow, new highway markings south of the 95/200 intersection will be applied. The markings have to be applied in 40-degree weather in order to properly set on the road surface.

The bypass is set to open for public use in November 2012. Until then, its roadways and pedestrian paths remain closed for safety reasons.

Sand Creek Byway winter construction updates are held monthly at the Transportation Information Office at 202 North Second Ave. They are held the first Thursday of the month at 11 a.m. Construction updates are also posted online (itd.idaho.gov/projects/d1).

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