Crews begin load tests in St. Croix River June 20Residents and commuters will see a ramp-up of activity in the St. Croix River beginning Wednesday, June 20, as crews prepare to document riverbed stability for the upcoming new bridge construction.
Residents and commuters will see a ramp-up of activity in the St. Croix River beginning Wednesday, June 20, as crews prepare to document riverbed stability for the upcoming new bridge construction.
The process includes driving two 24-inch piles and two 42-inch piles into the river bottom. Crews will place the piles with a crane, then hammer the piles until they are locked into rock or dense soils.
Residents may hear noise from the pile hammer from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The entire process for the initial pile driving will take approximately one month, with the majority of the project noise in the first four days. The entire load testing project will be complete by mid-August.
Residents, boaters and commuters will notice the contractor’s barge in the St. Croix River, which is 240 feet long and 170 feet wide. The impact to boaters during this operation will be minimal.
The load testing procedure is vital to the St Croix Crossing project as it provides critical information about soil conditions under the river. This determines the bridge foundation’s design.
To protect water quality during this process, MnDOT and the contractor will test the water daily both upstream and downstream of the barges.
St. Croix Crossing construction will begin in 2014 and take approximately three years to complete. Interested individuals can stay informed about the project by visiting www.mndot.gov/stcroixcrossing and the St. Croix Crossing Facebook page.