Swank Expected to Restart Construction on I-70 Bridges
Following a two-week pause in response to the coronavirus outbreak, Swank Construction is expected to resume work on the I-70 Bridges Project next week, according to officials with the West Virginia Divisions of Highways.
Swank notified state officials March 16 that the company was delaying the project for two weeks out of precaution for their employees’ health and well-being.
DOH District 6 Engineer Tony Clark said, at this point, the two-week delay is not expected to affect any major completion dates set for the project. He said Swank is expected to return Monday to restart work on the three major sections of the project, which stretches between the Marion Street interchange in Bridgeport and the Elm Grove area. Swank currently has 100 employees working on the project.
Ohio County Sheriff Tom Howard said while the lower speed limits continue to be enforced throughout the project zone, motorists will need to exhibit extra caution once again when construction ramps back up.
“With Swank Construction starting back up, motorists need to be more aware,” Howard explained.
He said motorists need to be extra cautious as the full start-up will put workers out in and along the work zones. He said while it seems the majority of the local community has adapted well to the lower speed limits, deputies are still stopping motorists who are speeding through the area. He said it’s the non-residents that his department is having the biggest issues with in regard to speeding.
Shortly after general contractor Swank Construction was awarded the $215 million project late last summer, they immediately began site preparation in many areas around the city.
The project includes the rehabilitation or replacement of 26 bridges on I-70 in Ohio County during the two-year construction schedule, with the full replacement of the two of the I-70 Fulton Bridges that span Wheeling Creek.
A complete nine-month closure of I-70 West between the Oglebay Park/Exit 2A and 16th Street/W.Va. 2 South Exit began on Feb. 1, allowing crews to perform demolition work and renovate a number of bridges in that area. The westbound Fulton Bridge is expected to reopen on time this November.
The complete closure for the eastbound side of I-70 where the Fulton Bridges are located is set to take place from Feb. 1, 2021, until Nov. 1, 2021.