Crews begin work downtown, city prepares for new I-74 bridge
PHOTO 1-3: DOT Maps of the preferred I-74 Corridor Project
PHOTO 4: The blue and dark red represent the traffic pattern of that of Kimberly Road, with the orange representing the portion of Kimberly closed. The pink represents the traffic pattern of 14th Street. The yellow and green are on and off ramps on I-74.
PHOTO 5: The blue line on this map represents the realignment of State and Grant Streets.
Crews have begun preliminary work on roads in downtown Bettendorf to prepare for construction of the new I-74 bridge.
Southbound Kimberly Road is closed, turning northbound Kimberly into a two-directional road. Southbound traffic is then detoured at on Calvert Drive, back onto Kimberly Road-13th Street interchange.
Grant and State Streets will be realigned at the new bridge, allowing for entrance and exit ramps from the interstate. Realignment of State Street to Grant Street work has begun beginning between 10th and 11th Streets.
Due to downtown construction, the Illinois bound entrance ramp from State Street is closed, leaving the entrance ramp from Grant the only one open. Because of current work on the bridge causing for heavy delays on the interstate, ramp traffic is then backed up onto Grant Street, as far as 18th Street, four blocks down during rush hour.
The current work on the bridge right now is for fixing approach structures to the bridge. Some concrete beneath the asphalt needs to be repaired. Expansion joints and some steel connections underneath the bridge approaches are being replaced as well.
The new bridge will consist of four lanes in each direction, with two separate bridge spans. More lanes will also be added to downtown streets including Grant, as well as multi-lane interstate ramps.
As for the new bridge itself, mayor Bob Gallagher said, “It will become a primary thoroughfare for commerce in the Quad Cities.”
Many buildings have had to be taken down in order to make room for the new bridge, many lots of which will become a clean slate for new development.
On May 2, a meeting was held to discuss the scheme and look of the buildings downtown, and materials available for construction.
The downtown has been split up into five nodes, or sectors, for different development.
A primary development consists of parks and trails, bringing Bettendorf closer to what Mayor Gallagher calls a “walkable, bikeable community.”
As for business downtown impacted by construction, major roads in the downtown are still open, but smaller, local streets have been the ones to close.
“I don’t know that there’s been much of an impact,” Mayor Gallagher said on downtown business.
Bridge construction is expected to be completed in 2022. At least 38,000 cars travel across the current bridge every day.