A sign shows the vehicle weight limit for the previously re-opened Millington Road bridge in December 2019.
A sign shows the vehicle weight limit for the previously re-opened Millington Road bridge in December 2019.

Beginning Monday, the Millington Bridge on County Highway 31, which is East 30th Road, over the Fox River will be closed until pier construction is completed.

Detours will be posted, but local residents are urged by the La Salle County Highway Department to seek alternative routes.

The bridge was reopened in December with a 5-ton weight limit posted.

The about $1.6 million Millington Road bridge is a combined project between Kendall and La Salle counties.

Kendall County Highway Engineer Fran Klaas said the bridge is still supported by its old piers, which is why there was a weight limit enacted as it temporarily reopened. He said temporary supports will have to be put in as contractors knock out the old piers and replace them with new concrete piers.

While the bridge is put on temporary supports, Klaas said, there can’t be any live loads on the bridge – hence the closure starting Monday.

“[The subcontractor] didn’t want to do it before because of the Fourth of July weekend,” Klaas said. “That’s why it’s after.”

Klaas said the rest of the project could be completed in less than a month if the area just gets normal weather without any huge rainfall – but he noted highway officials kept seeing historic rains in the last couple of years.

“We’re hoping this time they can get it done,” Klaas said.

Klaas said there isn’t much work left for the project as a whole. He said contractors just need a few weeks of dry weather to get done what they need to get done.

“Once it’s on temporary supports, there’s no going back. … They will have to finish this project before they reopen it again,” Klaas said.

In the meantime, Klaas said, he is asking people to respect the closure for safety’s sake.

The bridge, which spans the Fox River in Millington at the Kendall-La Salle county border, initially was closed for more than two years after the Illinois Department of Transportation shut down the bridge in May 2017. That was after officials discovered a scour hole under the north pier of the bridge during a routine inspection.

County officials attributed the project delays to consistently high water levels from rainfall.

For more local news, visit The Times at https://www.mywebtimes.com.

LaSalle County