Keystone Bridge Closed Three Days

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                Elkader’s historic Keystone Bridge will be closed to traffic for three days later this month. The bridge will be shut down January 20, 21 and 22 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. to accommodate large equipment that will be doing some testing on the structure. The tests are needed before the rehabilitation project can begin.

Pedestrians will be able to use the sidewalk during the time the structure is closed. Emergency vehicles will use Highway 13 and enter the city from Highway 56/Strawberry Point Road. 

 The Keystone Bridge Rehabilitation Project is schedule to begin in 2021. The work will take several months to complete and during that time, the structure will completely closed to traffic. However, the City will work with the engineers and contractors to try to keep the bridge open as much as possible.

The city has received nearly $1.5 million in state and federal funds for the project. However, local money must be used for the engineering and items not eligible for federal funding. The Council recently approved a loan not to exceed $500,000 for engineering costs and other expenses not covered by state and federal funds.

The Keystone Bridge Rehabilitation Project was originally estimated at about $820,000 but costs have increased since then. Testing will help provide an updated figure. State and federal funds should be sufficient to cover the new cost and also provide contingencies “in case we open the bridge up and find things are not as good as we hoped,” said City Administrator Jennifer Cowsert.


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