On October 1st, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) will begin a necessary rehabilitation of the deteriorated viaduct and retaining walls along the northbound entrance ramp to Lake Shore Drive at Michigan Avenue and Oak Street.
“This repair project is necessary due to the deteriorated condition of the concrete of the viaduct deck and retaining walls of the ramp, which has not seen any significant rehabilitation since its original construction in 1963,” said CDOT Commissioner Gabe Klein. “We want to complete this repair work immediately before another winter cycle of freezing and thawing, as well as additional damage that could come from the use of road salt.”
During the six-week rehabilitation project, the on-ramp will be closed to traffic until mid-November. Northbound vehicles will be rerouted along Inner Lake Shore Drive for one mile to LaSalle Drive, where they can proceed north on Lake Shore Drive. Adjustments to traffic signals and the deployment of traffic control aides will help move vehicles along the detour route.
Southbound traffic exiting Lake Shore Drive at Michigan and Oak will not be affected by the repair work. There may be intermittent nighttime lane closures in both directions on Lake Shore Drive on the top side the viaduct for needed repairs.
The $1.78 million project, to be performed by MQ Construction Co., will include the repair of the underside and topside of the on-ramp viaduct; repairing the concrete retaining walls and miscellaneous electrical and lighting repairs.
CDOT recently determined that the nearly 50-year-old structure was in need of immediate repair, and has been working to notify the neighborhood and motorists about the project and related ramp closure, including: meetings with businesses and neighborhood organizations; collaboration with the Chicago Transit Authority and local elected officials; and the placement of on-site electronic message boards.
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