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Jackson and Mechanic streets railroad bridge replacements project in Jackson - Update #6

LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will continue road closures on Mechanic, Blackstone, Van Buren, and Detroit streets in Jackson to allow crews to safely work. The century-old Jackson and Mechanic Street railroad bridges will be simultaneously replaced in early August along with the at-grade railroad crossing on Blackstone Street.

Mechanic Street:
The contractor sand blasted the existing steel on the east pier that will be encased in concrete. Micropiles have been completed and the abutment footing has been poured. The soldier pile retaining wall in the southwest quadrant has been completed. The northeast and southeast wingwalls have been poured with concrete. The west bridge abutment, the northwest retaining wall, the northeast steel sheet pile retaining wall, and the at-grade railroad crossing were completed in 2022.

Jackson Street:
Jackson Street will remain open to traffic until early July. The bridge superstructure is currently being built off-site. Both bridge abutments and all four concrete retaining walls and the steel sheet pile retaining walls in the northwest and southwest quadrants were completed in 2022.

Blackstone Street:
The contractor has started adjusting the road grade transitions to meet the new at-grade railroad crossing. Asphalt paving is scheduled to take place the week of June 19. Sidewalk and driveway grades have been adjusted and are in the process of being poured with concrete. Concrete curb and gutter have been completed along both sides of the road and paving will take during the week of June 26.

Looking Forward:
Work will continue throughout 2023 as the contractor works at Mechanic Street to complete the remaining bridge abutment. The pair of bridge superstructures will be built off-site in preparation for the superstructures to be moved into place using a self-propelled modular transporter (SPMT). Both bridge superstructures will be removed and replaced during a 120-hour closure of railroad traffic that is currently scheduled to take place in early August. 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 closed out with the replacement of curb and gutter, roadway paving, and alignment and turf restoration. The target date for reopening the local streets to traffic is late October.

Traffic restrictions:
Blackstone Street will remain closed until early July, at which point Blackstone Street will be reopened and Jackson Street will be closed. Mechanic, Detroit, Jackson, and Van Buren streets will remain closed through late October. Motorists should follow the posted detours. 

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