MERCED — Workers are making strides toward upgrading a bridge at 16th Street and Highway 99 -- part of Caltrans' west Merced bridge replacement project.
The construction, which began Nov. 6, 2009, is expected to be completed in the spring of next year.
The work will bring the bridge up to current standards by improving visibility and lines of sight, and by expanding clearance required by the railroad underneath, said Angela DePrato, public information officer for Caltrans.
The bridge will be seismically retrofitted, and six maintenance vehicle pullouts will be built adjacent to the shoulder, she said. Retaining walls are being built to preserve the existing right of way.
The total project cost is $34.3 million, with $29.8 million coming from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, said DePrato, who added that the project is on schedule and going well.
The 16th Street southbound onramp has been closed because of the project, but will reopen once construction is completed.
-- Mike North