LANSING, MI – The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) will close the US-41/M-26 Portage Lake Lift Bridge between Houghton and Hancock for 10 hours beginning at 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17. The bridge is scheduled to reopen at 7 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 18.
In case of a weather delay, an alternate date of Jan. 24 has been set. The closure is required to disconnect lift cables from the bridge’s lift span – one of the first phases of the $8.4 million bridge maintenance project that began this winter. The outside southbound lane of the bridge has been closed to traffic in preparation for the Jan. 17 work.
In addition to the Jan. 17 closure, motorists should expect:
– Four two-hour closures on Jan. 20, Jan. 21, Jan. 22 and Jan. 23 between 2 and 4 a.m. each morning. Four more two-hour closures during the same hours are planned for the week of Jan. 26.
– Nearly 170 intermittent 15- to 20-minute closures from January to March, between the hours of 7 p.m. and 6 a.m.
– One 11-and-a-half-hour closure March 21 from 9 p.m. to 8:30 a.m. with an alternate date of March 28 in case of weather delay.
– Eight two-hour closures in March from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m.
Emergency vehicles will be able to cross the bridge during all closures. Except for the Jan. 17 and March 21 closures, snowmobile traffic will be maintained throughout the project.
Waiting rooms on each side of the Portage Canal have been arranged for motorists without an alternate place to stay during the all-night bridge closures on Jan. 17 and March 21. The Magnuson Hotel Franklin Square Inn at 820 Shelden Ave. in Houghton and Lakeview Manor at 1401 West Quincy St. in Hancock have agreed to provide warm spots for motorists to sit and wait for the bridge to reopen.
For more information during all-night bridge closures, motorists can tune to AM 1610 radio in the Houghton and Hancock area or follow @MDOT_UP on Twitter.
During the ongoing project, MDOT will perform upgrades and preventive maintenance work on the Portage Lake Lift Bridge through mid-April 2016. The project includes lift cable replacement, balance chain maintenance, electrical and mechanical upgrades, security system improvements, spot painting, and new barrier gates.
For more information on the project, call MDOT’s Ishpeming Transportation Service Center at 906-485-4270 or visit the project webpage: http://1.usa.gov/14dIsqa.
– The Portage Lake Lift Bridge between Houghton and Hancock is scheduled to be closed for 10 hours from 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, to 7 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 18.
– Other short and long-term closures will occur from January through March during the $8.4 million bridge maintenance project.
– Waiting rooms on each side of the Portage Canal have been arranged for motorists without an alternate place to stay during the all-night bridge closures.