It’s a year of megaprojects! Expect to encounter construction signs while traveling America’s busiest highways. Renovations continue on many of America’s highways.
Iconic features of Illinois’ Interstate-74 (I-74) bridge will be preserved during rejuvenation, but retrofit with modern features. This bridge, referred to as the “I-74 Bridge” is a vital artery for locals, it’s the only motorable bridge between Illinois and Iowa. According to I74bridge.com, the project will restore the Interstate-74 (I-74) corridor from Moline Illinois to Davenport Iowa. The revamped bridge will include aesthetic lighting, a scenic overlook and an elevator. The project is projected to cost $1.2 billion upon completion.
Orlando’s Interstate-4 (I-4) is in the second year of a seven-year plan to become the “ultimate” highway.” According to I4express.com, the Florida Department of Transportation’s is creating “a signature corridor that will increase safety, mobility and connectivity in the region.” Sketches of the highway’s proposed arch appear to be something from Sci-Fi. According to Transportation.gov, renovations include pedestrian bridges, accent lighting, fountain illumination, sculptures, and monuments. The massive and winding multileveled structures go beyond the typical highway. The project is projected to cost $2.3 billion.
Modernity is a natural aspect of progression. As we move forward structures along the highway appear futuristic, however, preservation of the old remains part of America’s blended landscape. Pennsylvania’s Penn Street Bridge, built during 1913, is receiving a renovation. The bridge spans the Schuylkill River, connecting East and West Reading. Many local businesses depend on The Penn Street Bridge for survival. According to Roadbridges.com, construction crews are restoring the historic bridge’s spandrels arches and concrete lattice. Additionally, the bridge will be updated with a lookout for pedestrians. Restoration of the bridge is expected to cost $42 million.
Stanton Island’s flying-saucer-like Bayonne Bridge is receiving an overhaul. The bridge, one of three connecting New York to New Jersey, spans the Kill Van Kull. The arching steel suspension bridge was erected during 1931. According to Roadbridges.com, construction crews plan to widen the roadway, install two new decks and increase supporting piers. This megaproject possesses distinct challenges – construction crews plan to greatly increase the road’s surface while raising it to 215 feet above sea level. Suspension bridges weren’t designed to be altered. Crews will live on-site to monitor the bridge’s structural integrity.
America’s highways are fascinating veins that connect the country; they’re vital for the survival of business. Moreover, these mega-structures strike awe in those who stop to ponder them and inspire engineers to dream.