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Hennepin County and the city of Minneapolis released this press release Friday. In short, a preliminary report suggests that wind is to blame for the failure of two cable connections on the Martin Olav Sabo pedestrian and biking bridge in Minneapolis. The bridge was closed from Feb. 19 to June 1.
Officials say that Minneapolis is striving to reopen the Martin Olav Sabo Bridge by June 4, the Star Tribune reports. The bicycle and pedestrian span over Hiawatha Avenue has been closed for three months, after the fracture of a steel anchor led the bridge’s tallest set of cables to fall from the mast on Feb 19.
Part of Hiawatha Avenue was closed Monday morning after a cable snapped on a pedestrian and bicycle bridge that spans the road.
An engineer told the Star Tribune he noticed "high stresses" on a plate anchoring a set of cables during construction of the Sabo Bridge in 2006. The bridge was closed last month after an anchor plate cracked and caused cables to fall 100 feet.
City officials say it could take months to learn why one of the bridge's cables broke, shutting down traffic on the busy street and light rail track that run beneath it. The bike-and-pedestrian bridge is only five years old and had recently passed an inspection.
The Sabo bridge, which was closed after a pair of support cables broke in February, is reopening Friday afternoon to foot and bike traffic. Structural support was added underneath the bridge deck. Minneapolis is awaiting a report on what caused the cables to break loose.
Officials with the city of Minneapolis, Hennepin County and the Met Council told Minnesota Public Radio the cost to shutdown and repair the pedestrian and bicycle crossing topped $1.1 million. The Sabo Bridge was closed for three-and-a-half months after two of the bridge's supporting cables came loose in February. A report released in June blames the failure on wind vibrations.
A Minneapolis resident told WCCO he saw a cop car and ambulance travel over the five-year-old pedestrian bridge before last week's closure. A city spokesperson says the bridge is designed to handle emergency vehicles.
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