Despite getting a preview of the upcoming winter this past weekend, crews will continue repairs and restoration of the Stillwater Lift Bridge. Although the project was originally expected to be complete by late June this year, this spring’s high floodwaters and the discovery of additional work on the lift span has delayed completion until early next year.
This year’s work included repairing steel, painting, upgrading the electrical and mechanical system, installing decorative lights and rebuilding the concourse area to restore the lift bridge to its original 1931 look.
As of September, all spans of the bridge are painted, and old deteriorated concrete in the concourse and sidewalks at the Minnesota end of the bridge has been removed. Crews also started pouring new concrete.
Span 6, two spans east of the lift span, will be floated back into place after the end of the boating season in mid- to late October. At that time, the lift span will be raised to serve boats until freeze-up. The move could be delayed depending on St. Croix River water levels. Crews floated span 6 out of position early this summer to allow for boat traffic while they worked on the lift span.
Work will continue on the lift span throughout the rest of the year with the installation of drums, and the ring and pinion gears on the lift mechanism to raise and lower the lift span.
And although the loop trail is complete in both Minnesota and Wisconsin, the entire trail will not open until next spring after completion of the lift bridge.
More about this project
The lift bridge is being converted to a bicycle/pedestrian crossing that will become part of a nearly five-mile “loop trail” system connecting the new river bridge with the historic bridge and other regional trails. The lift bridge will continue to operate and allow boat navigation beneath.
If you’d like more information about the Stillwater Lift Bridge project, please visit: mndot.gov/metro/projects/liftbridge.