The Burnside Bridge is closed to all users until as late as 5 a.m. on Monday, January 8 to allow Hamilton Construction to set up a work zone on the south side of the bridge and traffic control on the north side. Two lanes will be closed on the bridge through 2019, as the contractor repairs pavement, sidewalks and railings, paints areas below the deck and makes other repairs.
When the bridge reopens to traffic on January 8, the traffic plan will include:
- One westbound and two eastbound traffic lanes
- Shared-use paths (7-8 feet wide) for bicyclists, pedestrians and personal mobility devices (such as wheel chairs) on both sides of traffic. The south path will be separated from traffic by a barrier, while the north path will use the sidewalk.
- Reduced speed limit of 25 miles per hour (down from 35 mph)
- A recent lane striping change will give priority to eastbound TriMet bus service on West Burnside Street between Third and Fourth avenues.
This month repairs will also begin at two locations under the west bridge approach:
- Waterfront Park: While Portland Saturday Market is closed for winter, repairs will be made to the underside of the bridge in Waterfront Park. Bicycle and pedestrian access will be maintained through the park.
- Naito Parkway: The contractor will repair the underside of the bridge over Naito Parkway, starting on the east side of the road. Temporary lane closures will be in place along the four-lane road. Bicyclists and pedestrians on the east side of Naito will use Waterfront Park.
The repairs are part of the $19 million Burnside Bridge Maintenance Project. The project includes structural, mechanical, electrical and surface repairs designed to extend the life of the bridge 15 – 20 years. The bridge is 91 years old. In 2017 repairs were made below the bridge, to avoid closing bridge lanes during repairs to the Morrison Bridge deck. Repairs may require the Burnside Bridge to be closed on several nights in 2018.
Multnomah County maintains the Burnside Bridge and five other Willamette River bridges. The county is developing a long-term plan to ensure that the Burnside Bridge can withstand a major earthquake, since it is part of a regional lifeline route. The 2017-2019 repairs are for maintenance, and will not improve the bridge’s performance in an earthquake.