I-35W Bridge Collapse - Week 50

Week 50 by Ivy Chang | September 28, 2010

FEMA denies Minneapolis’ reimbursement claims

Minneapolis asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to cover some cleanup and rebuilding cost after the I-35W Bridge collapsed last August, but the government rejected about $1 million of that request. The city appealed and FEMA denied those appeals last week in two letters to Minneapolis officials.

FEMA said it won’t pay about 24 percent, or $949,000, of Minneapolis’ $3.9-million reimbursement request.

The city council is getting a full briefing of the matter this week.

Closure pours complete, falsework removed

The closure pour on the southbound bridge takes place this week. Last week, the closure pour on the northbound bridge required seven concrete trucks, each loaded with 8 cubic yards of concrete, to fill the form built between the cantilevers. After three hours, most of the concrete was placed and crews smoothed the surface of the deck.

After curing, construction vehicles will begin driving across the bridge to focus on remaining work.

Crews removed falsework holding up the bridge deck at the east side of the bridge as construction neared completion. Crews loosened the temporary support pillars, and a crane lowered them to the ground.

This week crews will begin paving the mainline highway and the Washington Avenue entrance and exit ramps on the south side of the Mississippi River. They’ll continue to remove falsework now on the north side of the river under Span 3.

Concrete pouring and paving to increase

With the two sides of the bridge connected, the schedule for pouring concrete is on a fast track. On the northbound bridge at Span 4, crews are pouring concrete to connect Pier 4 with Abutment 5 and they continue to pour concrete between Abutment 5 and the Second Street Bridge. Painting of columns also continues now at Pier 2.

Following paving on the north side, crews will cut expansion joints in the concrete once it cures. Paving and sawing begins this week on the south side and continues until the end of July.

At University Avenue’s entrance ramp to I-35W, crews are replacing the signal foundation and installing light poles to prepare for traffic going across the bridge. Crews will also install railings and signs, begin striping the roadway and, in the next month, begin landscape work under the bridge.

On Sunday, July 27, at 10:30 a.m., Jon Chiglo, MnDOT manager for the bridge project, will discuss work that remains before the bridge opens on the local CBS affiliate.