Full Closure of US 34 for Wray Bridge Replacement Detour Starts Tuesday

October 29, 2012 - Northeastern Colorado/CDOT Region 4 - Additional lane closures will be in place beginning Monday morning.

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) would like to remind motorists that there will be a major highway closure beginning Tuesday, October 30 at 7 p.m. As part of the bridge replacement project on US 34 east of Wray near mile marker (MM) 254, the highway will be completely closed to all traffic 24/7 through Friday, November 2. A follow up news release will be sent with the exact time of scheduled reopening, which is dependent on weather and how quickly crews are able to complete the work.

During the closure, crews will demolish and remove the old bridge, and slide the new one in its place. This method of bridge repair is the first of its kind to be used in Colorado. By building the new bridge alongside the old and then sliding it into place where the former bridge stood, CDOT was able to use resources as efficiently as possible, keep the highway open longer than would have been previously possible, and will keep the closure to a minimum. The former timber bridge over the North Fork of the Republican River was both functionally obsolete and structurally deficient, requiring replacement.

Local detours will be necessary for motorists, as the closure will be in place 24 hours a day. Motorists who must or prefer to use highway detours must travel to St. Francis, Kansas and Haigler, Nebraska via US 34, US 36, US 385 and Nebraska/Kansas State Highway 27. A highway detour map is available at www.coloradodot.info/projects/us34wraybridge.

In addition to the full highway closure that will last from 7 p.m. Tuesday, October 30 through Friday, November 2, there will also be scheduled lane closures on Monday, October 29 and Tuesday, October 30 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. but the highway will remain open at that time. During the lane closures, CDOT maintenance crews will be repairing another bridge structure in the area approximately 4.5 miles east of the Wray bridge at MM 258.9. Crews will be replacing a timber bridge deck with a new steel deck to increase the structural integrity of the bridge and to help improve safety. The maintenance work is being done in conjunction with the closure to minimize the impact to motorists. It will require a one-lane detour and a traffic signal, and overweight and oversize loads will be restricted from driving through the work zone.

Motorists are reminded to obey all road signs and flaggers, and to drive Slow for the Cone Zone.

Lawrence Construction is the contractor for the $2.5 million replacement project funded through the Colorado Bridge Enterprise (CBE), a government-owned entity within CDOT. The purpose of the CBE is to complete repair, reconstruct, or replace bridges that are in poor condition. To learn more about the CBE, visit www.coloradodot.info/programs/BridgeEnterprise.