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Blatnik Bridge project postponed because of traffic backups

The Minnesota Department of Transportation has rescheduled maintenance work on the Blatnik Bridge that was set to take place this week after the work caused significant traffic delays on both the bridge and the east approach to the bridge early Wednesday.

“We had scheduled the work on the Blatnik Bridge this week as part of our summer bridge maintenance plan,” District Engineer Duane Hill said. “We had to close one lane on the bridge to ensure a safe work area. We discovered that reducing the traffic lanes on Blatnik caused a significant traffic backup. We stopped our work and will reschedule it.”

Congestion on the Blatnik Bridge was already affected by work on the neighboring Bong Bridge. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation is doing a major rehabilitation project on the Bong Bridge. The westbound lanes were closed to traffic on Monday and will be closed until Nov. 1, 2014. Next year, the eastbound lanes will close.

“The maintenance work is key to keeping the bridge in good working condition,” Hill added. “We will find a time to do the work when traffic is not as heavy. Our work often affects travel times, and we do our best to reduce delays when we can.”