City: River Road Bridge Closed

State officials confirm changes in bridge's western abutment indicate instability, span over Blackberry Creek closed indefinitely.

The River Road bridge over Blackberry Creek was closed indefinitely Wednesday after state officials reviewed inspection photographs showing a gap in the western abutment had worsened within the past seven months.

The bridge sits about two blocks west of Route 47, so City Engineer Joe Wywrot suggested motorists take Route 47 north to Route 34 and Route 34 west to Eldamain Road as a detour.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Wywrot did not know the cost or timeline involved with fixing the gap.

“We’re going to be investigating that,” Wywrot said, adding that the city is responsible for paying for the repairs. “I honestly don’t know what it’s going to take to fix it.”

The western abutment is made of stone block and is at least 100 years old, Wywrot said. The gap existed before the city became responsible for the bridge but Tuesday’s inspection was the first to reveal any changes, Wywrot said.

City staff sent photographs from Tuesday's and previous inspections to officials at the Illinois Department of Transportation, who confirmed the bridge should be closed for safety reasons, Wywrot said.

LoveOn June 04, 2011 at 11:38 AM
I live on the stretch of River Road that is closed and I do think the bridge should be fixed. My kids are loving the fact that they can ride their bikes and walk the dog for the first time ever. I love that I can get the mail and a car isn't speeeeeeding by at 100 MPH. BUT, it has been a hassle for the school busses. River Road is used by so many people. Yes, you can always find another route to get you from point A to point B, but what about bike and running races and all the various events and organizations that use the PNA camp??? My worry is safety. There really should be an alternate entrance/exit.
M Keane June 04, 2011 at 01:25 PM
One other point about Yorkville paying: When the wastewater treatment plant was expanded, which was the main reason the city annexed the bridge and part of River Road, there were hundreds of heavy trucks bringing in soil and construction materials over that bridge. I imagine some deterioration occured from that type of traffic and last time I checked, even Mr. Johnsom relied on the wastewater treatment plant for his...
Anna Sutton June 07, 2011 at 10:47 PM
Darn, an extra 10 minutes on my daily commute! :-( And I miss the pretty view from the bridge!
M McGarry August 04, 2011 at 04:02 PM
I drive on this bridge at least 4 times a day, sometimes more. Without it, I am forced to detour 10-15 minutes out of my way and deal with the ridiculous amount of stop lights the city has put up along 34. You have thousands of Plano residents that now live on the other side of this bridge that are now forced to drive elsewhere to get where they want... it definitely has caused me to spend my money elsewhere more than a few times because I didn't want to bother going around and instead went into Plano. It's a shame a community with the status of Yorkville can't keep up repairs on something as important as a bridge... with so few means to cross the water ways, this is just terrible.
Peg Kenyon August 24, 2011 at 01:27 PM
I certainly agree with M McGarry 100%. I can't tell you how angry I was to find out this is not going to be fixed for over a year!! I live on River Rd. and our home is for sale. This is hurting our sales traffic. I hope we get reimbursed for all the extra gas it takes to take a 2-4 mi. detour 3-4 times a day. If there is something good to say about this, it is that it's keeping those crazy bikers off the road. They are an accident waiting to happen! I can't think of anything more stupid than riding a bike on River Road. These goofy people drive 60-80 mph down this road and then....a bike! Yikes. I believe this entire project is questionable! Whats the real story??? P. Kenyon


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