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Demolition Of The Historic Sixth Street Bridge Postponed For Several Months

The Sixth Street Bridge (via Facebook)
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The Sixth Street Bridge will stay upright for several more months as demolition of the historic bridge has been postponed.

The bridge, which connects downtown Los Angeles and Boyle Heights over the L.A. River, was slated to be torn down beginning early this month, but the Department of Public Works now says the timeline for demolition has been pushed back, reports The Eastsider. According to Tonya E. Durrell, department spokeswoman, The Bureau of Engineering “is finalizing demolition plans and expects demolition to start in the next couple months.” In the meantime, the bridge—officially known as the Sixth Street Viaduct—will remain open.

Built in 1932, the 3,500-foot-long concrete and steel structure has dramatically deteriorated over the decades, mostly due to a rare chemical reaction in the cement supports that make it particularly vulnerable to earthquakes. The bridge will be replaced by a new, $420 million one, which will feature swooping arches, pedestrian and bike pathways, as well as surrounding parks, public art and other community features. There was a grand farewell party for the bridge on Oct. 24, 2015 that featured music, food and other festivities.

In preparation for the ultimate closure and demolition of the bridge, crews have prepared detours and other traffic improvements to enable drivers, pedestrians and cyclists to get across the river. Instead of a big, Vegas-style explosion, the bridge will instead be slowly dismantled. And according to the project's website, construction has already begun on a new concrete pile for the new bridge's pedestrian ramp. The project is expected to be completed sometime in 2019.