1/5/2011 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Commuters who use I-110 to get to and from the base should be prepared to take alternate routes for the first few months of 2011.
The $4.1 million project to replace the steel grid deck in the center of the I-110 bridge began this week and should be completed in May.
The first phase involves removing the concrete median that divides northbound and southbound traffic. All four lanes are open during this initial work, but lanes will narrow and shift slightly before the construction zone. Lanes will be closed in other phases of the work.
"Sometimes the traffic will be restricted to one or two lanes," said Kelly Castleberry, District 6 engineer for the Mississippi Department of Transportation. "We're totally replacing the steel deck span. We've been welding new plates constantly to repair the damaged areas."
Work on the 40-year-old bridge has been scheduled to avoid hurricane season, Mr. Castleberry said. "This strategic timing will lessen the impact of the restricted openings of the drawbridge," he pointed out.
Motorists who want to avoid construction delays can use the Biloxi-Ocean Springs Bridge or Biloxi's Popps Ferry Bridge.
For more information as the work progresses, log on to www.gomdot.com.