Cedar Rapids Bridge Closing Monday, October 18 Until Spring 2022
The City of Cedar Rapids has announced they'll be closing a Cedar River bridge on Monday, October 18. The closing will be in effect until sometime next spring, as work on permanent flood protection for the city continues.
The 16th Avenue Bridge will be closed to all traffic... vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists starting on October 18. All traffic is going to be detoured to the 12th Avenue Bridge during the closure. During that time, 12th Avenue will have one lane of vehicular traffic in each direction. It also has two permanent bike lanes, one for both north and southbound riders. That will allow for bike traffic off the nearby Cedar River Trail, which will also be closed in that area while the new west-side floodgate at 16th Avenue is constructed. .
[ORIGINAL STORY SEPTEMBER 17] Another big piece of the construction puzzle for permanent flood construction begins on Monday, September 20. This one will eventually close one of the Cedar River bridges downtown until sometime next spring.
The signs of flood control progress continue to be prevalent along the Cedar River and starting on Monday, two more projects will begin. They will both have an impact on traffic, though much of the work on one of them will be out of view, below the streets of downtown.
Tuesday, September 21 is the one-year anniversary of work beginning on the 3rd Avenue floodgate that resulted in the closure of the 3rd Avenue Bridge on the east side of the Cedar River. As that work continues, another project is set to begin. It too will close a downtown bridge, but that's not expected to happen until sometime in October.
According to a media release from the City of Cedar Rapids, work will begin September 20 on a rolling floodgate at 16th Avenue SW, in the Czech Village. It will extend flood protection for that part of the city that has already seen an earthen levee constructed. The levee extends from 16th Avenue to the Linn County Solid Waste Agency. A floodgate is already in place on the southeast side of the 16th Avenue Bridge. The city says that a "decorative gateway arch" will eventually be constructed to welcome visitors to the areas on each side of the 16th Avenue Bridge, known as Czech Village and New Bohemia.
Sometime, likely during the month of October, the 16th Avenue Bridge will close to all traffic... vehicular, cyclist, and pedestrian. The exact date of the closure will be announced at a future date. Work on the floodgate is expected to be completed during the summer of 2022.
Future construction in Czech Village includes a permanent full-height floodwall at the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library. It will stretch from 16th Avenue SW to 12th Avenue SW. It will have a raised yard, with terraces, for both outdoor activities and aesthetics. That floodwall is expected to be finished in 2023. The start date of construction hasn't been announced.
Also in the Czech Village, work continues on an underground stormwater gate that will prevent water from backing up into the Cedar Rapids storm sewer system, causing flooding of streets. The underground gate will be closed during flood emergencies involving the Cedar River. That project should be done by the end of 2021.
On the east side of the river, storm sewer improvements are scheduled to begin on Monday, September 20, along 1st Street S.E. That will close parts of 1st Street S.E., between 3rd Avenue and 5th Avenue, to southbound traffic for the remainder of 2021. The construction will begin at 5th Avenue and progress toward 3rd Avenue. Next year, some intersections in that same area will be restricted or closed.
Construction work on 1st Street S.E. will connect a pair of pump stations that are scheduled to be built in the future. It will help protect the downtown area from flooding, as well as reducing the number of underground outlets for the Cedar River.