Home Avenue bridge closed for September

Village to repair pedestrian path over the Ike

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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

Those who use the Home Avenue pedestrian bridge over the Eisenhower Expressway will have to find another route for the month of September.

The village of Oak Park will be repairing sections of the structure, including replacing and patching sections of the bridge and deck, according to a village press release.

The pathway, which was built in 1957, has been largely unchanged since its construction, aside from occasional patching and repairs.

The village approved spending $136,000 to repair the bridges along Home, East and Lombard avenues. The expenditure was approved after concrete broke off from one of the overpasses and onto oncoming traffic along the Eisenhower Expressway.

Part of the project entails installing wood paneling under the bridge to catch falling debris.

In April, the Oak Park Board of Trustees also approved spending $515,000 to repair pavement on the bridge decks.

"The Home Avenue pedestrian bridge has been on the village's infrastructure to-do list for some time," Public Works Director John Wielebnicki said in the press release. "But it is a complex project that requires approval from a number of jurisdictions in the Ike ditch below.

"Not only does the bridge cross the expressway, which is the jurisdiction of the Illinois Department of Transportation, it also spans the CTA Blue Line and the CSX Railroad tracks. Each of these organizations had a say in the scope and timing of the project," Wielebnicki added.

The village has designated Oak Park Avenue the safest nearby detour for pedestrians and bicyclists while the Home Avenue bridge is closed.

The village plans to release updates on the project to Elementary School District 97 administrators.

More information is available at 708-358-5700 or by email at publicworks@oak-park.us.


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