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Jackson and Mechanic streets railroad bridge replacements project in Jackson - Update #5

LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan Department of Transportation's (MDOT) project to replace two century-old railroad bridges over Jackson and Mechanic streets in Jackson is expected to resume in March. Work includes replacing the railroad grade crossing at Blackstone Street. Jackson and Mechanic streets were reopened on Nov. 23 while activity was paused for the winter.

Mechanic Street:
The west bridge abutment, the northwest retaining wall, and the northeast steel sheet pile retaining wall have been completed. The at-grade railroad crossing was rebuilt to accommodate water main work under the railroad tracks. Asphalt paving allowed Mechanic Street to be open during the winter.

Jackson Street:
Both bridge abutments and all four concrete retaining walls have been completed. The steel sheet pile retaining walls in the northwest and southwest quadrants also are substantially complete. Asphalt patching allowed Jackson Street to be for the winter.

Looking forward:

  • The remaining bridge abutment and soldier pile retaining wall at Mechanic Street will be completed.
  • The pair of bridge superstructures will be built off-alignment in preparation for the superstructures to be moved into place using a self-propelled modular transport system (SPMT).
  • Both bridge superstructures will be replaced during a 120-hour continuous closure of railroad traffic.
  • The railroad grade will be raised to its new alignment and the retaining wall ground anchors will be permanently locked off to support the retaining walls.
  • The project will be wrapped up with the replacement of some curb and gutter, roadway paving and alignment, and turf restoration.

Traffic restrictions:
Detroit and Van Buren streets will remain closed through the winter. Jackson and Mechanic streets will be closed again in March when work resumes.

Safety benefit:
Replacing these bridges will provide smooth and safe railroad operations, maintaining this vital part of the state's economy. Closing streets during this type of work is necessary to provide the safest work area possible for work crews and motorists. 

For more information, visit the project webpage, call 517-780-7540 or e-mail Time-lapse and drone videos are available online