Massive pothole repaired on NB I-75 in SW Detroit
Detroit — A gaping pothole that appeared on northbound Interstate 75 on the Rouge River Bridge Thursday afternoon was repaired overnight and will have no effect on Friday’s traffic.
According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, the pothole — which measured 15 feet long and 6 feet wide — closed the right two lanes of I-75 near Dearborn Street, according to MDOT spokeswoman Diane Cross.
“It was reported to us about 4 p.m.,” Cross said. “It was located in the far right lane next to the shoulder. We blocked that lane and the lane next to it so we would have a barrier between drivers and the repair crew.”
According to Cross, crews reduced the lane closure to just the right lane only by 1 a.m. Friday while the quick-curing concrete hardened.
“We checked with the Michigan State Police and our courtesy patrol personnel, but neither received any reports of car damage or flattened tires,” Cross said.
It wasn’t immediately clear what sparked the crater, but others have been reported recently on the bridge — which MDOT traffic counts show is among the busiest in the region, carrying 115,000 vehicles daily between Fort and Dearborn streets.
In August, a deep hole developed between Dearborn and Springwells, in the right center lane of northbound I-75, causing a number of flat tires and snarling traffic.
Concerns about the bridge’s safety were raised earlier this year when potholes opened up throughout the roadway in January and March.
The Detroit News reported that state and federal agencies found the span to be “structurally deficit” because of its deteriorating deck structure.
According to Cross, MDOT will begin major repairs on the bridge starting in 2017.
“We will be rebuilding the deck and the driving surface at a cost of over $100 million,” Cross said. “We will not be tearing it down to the ground; the pier supports and bridge beams will remain the same. The rebuild will between Fort and Springwells, which will cover four lanes in each direction, the shoulders and the medians.
“That is a lot of concrete and barriers.”