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Engineers hope to open two lanes on Nipigon River Bridge by end of February

January 20, 2016

Keith Leslie, The Canadian Press

TORONTO – Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation hopes to have two lanes of a failed bridge on a northern section of the Trans-Canada Highway open to traffic by the end of February.

However, engineers still don’t know what caused the steel decking on the newly-built Nipigon River Bridge to lift about 60 centimetres on Jan. 10, forcing a 24-hour shutdown that severed the Trans-Canada Highway link between the east and west.

“Our focus at the Ministry of Transportation is to get both lanes of traffic open safely and as quickly as we possibly can, and at the same time work with all the labs and all of the partners involved in designing and constructing this bridge to get to the root of the problem,” said Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca.

“We are taking into account at this point a number of possible factors, but we haven’t ruled anything out.”

Cars and most trucks must wait about five minutes to cross the bridge on the one lane that was reopened last week after engineers used huge concrete blocks to lower part of the decking back to a passable level.

Engineers are looking at a number of options to open the second lane on the bridge, added Del Duca. Read More