You can’t get there from here (Redux).

Dee bridge disaster

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This post was originally written last July in the height of my frustration of our bridge situation. Since I find myself there once again I thought we could revisit the IDiOTs planning. Yes, 3 of the four bridges that serve this community of over 250k people are once again under construction.

Originally posted 7/09:

I live in the Midwest, on the banks of the Mighty Mississippi. My house is in Illinois; my job is in Iowa. I have lived within 90 miles of where I am sitting right now my entire life. I am fully aware of and accustomed to the fact that winter means driving with people who forgot how to drive in snow, and the rest of the year means road construction.

Traversing the bridge from home to work and back again is a daily adventure no matter what the weather. This year the ID(i)OT (Illinois Department (imbeciles) of Transportation decided they were going to completely replace the west bound lanes of I-80 from four miles east of the bridge to right up to the bridge. No problem. They have moving lanes and construction down to a science. I came home from work on a Tuesday and everything was fine. I attempted to go to work on Wednesday morning and the ramp I normally take was completely closed. Gee, thanks for the warning. I put on my big girl panties, drove east for four miles, did the clover-leaf and was on my merry way to work in two-way traffic on the east bound lanes.

For the next week, I utilized the back roads on both sides of the river to avoid the majority of the traffic back-ups; I do have a GPS, and stayed off the interstate as much as possible. The detours added four to five minutes to my drive each way. No big deal. The construction was moving along at a fantastic clip. Already, they had de-constructed the entire ramp and a large portion of the west bound lanes leading up to the bridge.

During this time, I know that I am not alone in my road constructions woes. There is also construction on the other main bridge through town. On the east bound side. Watching the updates on the news made me feel lucky. Those delays were horrendous!

The following week the annual bridge inspection took place. On the news that night I hear the words “failed inspection”. WHAT?? Are you kidding me?? The side of the bridge they have ALL the traffic on has failed inspection. Effective immediately there will be no east bound traffic on the bridge at all. Only one lane of west bound traffic will be allowed until at least the end of June. Six weeks! You KNOW how construction schedules go. Within two weeks the estimated opening date of two way traffic on the bridge was the beginning of August. How in the HELL am I going to get home from work each day?

And really, whose bright idea was it to start all this road construction at the bridge RIGHT before the annual inspection?

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