Night closures set next week for southbound I-5 bridge lanes

By Eric Florip, Columbian transportation & environment reporter

Published:

Updated: June 14, 2012, 7:32 PM

 

Expect four more nights of closures on the southbound side of the Interstate 5 Bridge, according to the Oregon Department of Transportation.

Crews will close the span while they continue ongoing counterweight repairs.

ODOT will close the southbound span at 11 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday next week. It will open again at 5 a.m. each of the following mornings.

The I-5 Bridge works by using huge counterweights to raise and lower the lift span. Earlier this year, ODOT discovered that two of the rollers guiding one of those weights had detached from the track. Crews have been working toward replacing them ever since, causing frequent lifts and closures on the southbound side.

An engineering and architecture firm is helping ODOT make sure the affected counterweight is positioned correctly. Until the repairs are finished, the southbound span can only move up and down at a very slow speed, according to ODOT. That means longer delays for southbound traffic when a bridge lift occurs.

During next week's closures, drivers should use Interstate 205 to get from Vancouver to Portland. Northbound traffic on I-5 won't be affected.