MDOT working on M-203 bridge replacement

HANCOCK — A replacement bridge is in the works for M-203 over Swedetown Creek after flooding washed out a large culvert at the site on Father’s Day.

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will first put in a temporary bridge with July 24 as the target completion date, said Dan Weingarten, communications representative for the Superior region.

The one-lane bridge will feature temporary traffic signals in place for directing alternating directions of traffic.

Though not permanent, the temporary bridge will restore a main route from Hancock to Calumet and parks like McClain. The area west of the bridge is open to local traffic but currently requires a roundabout route to get there.

A bid has not been awarded at this point.

Long-term, MDOT is pushing to have a permanent structure over the Swedetown Creek in place before winter arrives, Weingarten said.

In preparation, analysis is underway for the design process.

“We’re doing things like soil borings, surveying, analyses of water flow,” he explained.

The new design will be based on findings and building standards but likely not designed for another “1,000-year flood.”

“I think it’s safe to say… it would be prohibitively expensive to design all of our infrastructure to withstand a thousand-year- flood,” Weingarten said.

More details will be revealed as the project develops.

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