The old I-74 bridge will be demolished in the most boring way
The new I-74 Mississippi River Bridge has been fully open for some time. Every time you drive over the new I-74 bridge, you are reminded of the green, ugly, narrow, narrow old bridge we used to travel to Illinois and Iowa. The Iowa and Illinois Departments of Transportation have announced how they are going to say “goodbye” to the old bridge and it is going to be very disappointing.
On December 1, 2021, the new I-74 Mississippi River Bridge opened to traffic in both directions. But in the time it took to build the new I-74 bridge until today, we’ve all asked ourselves the same question. How are they going to get rid of the old I-74 bridge?
We all wanted the same thing to happen. We wanted the old bridge to be blown up. I don’t know if we all have a problem or an obsession with explosives, but it would have been really cool to see this show.
Tuesday, I-74 Mississippi River Bridge officials announced how they are going to eliminate this horrible eye sore from our lives once and for all. Unfortunately, no explosives will be involved.
How the old bridge will fall
The plan to get rid of the old I-74 suspension bridge was released and officials even acknowledged that we wanted it to explode saying:
“We know you want to see the old bridge go down with a bang, but…we’ve decided to dismantle the majority of it piece by piece. At this time, the contractor only plans to use explosives on certain areas of the bridge.”
If you don’t clean it, you have no say
Why you chose the boring path of dismantling makes a lot of sense if you think about it. Officials say dismantling the majority of the bridge will have fewer impacts on river traffic, minimize the amount of debris to be removed from the river, and reduce impacts on endangered mussels.
In a pleasant way, they told the Quad Cities “you don’t clean it up if we blow it up, so we’ll just take it apart.”
Fair. Very just.
When will the old bridge fall?
I-74 bridge officials said the Helm Group was awarded the demolition contract. They were partners in the construction of all the bridges for the I-74 overpass in downtown Bettendorf.
Demolition of the old I-74 bridge has begun and is expected to be complete in mid-2024. Officials say people can check out the demolition during walks on the new bridge path and riverside trails.
It will be a slow process, but I think we are all happy to say “goodbye!” at the old I-74 bridge.
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