Milton-Madison Bridge Pier Demo Fri.
By Mike Perleberg
(Madison, Ind.) – It could finally happen Friday.
The explosive demolition of an old pier at the Milton-Madison Bridge is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. The demo has been delayed due to weather several times since it was first scheduled Wednesday, January 22.
The Milton-Madison Bridge will be closed for only about 10 minutes surrounding the blast. People can spectate from outside an 800-foot safety perimeter established around the blast zone.
According to the Milton-Madison Bridge Project, the 92-foot-tall concrete pier will be removed in a series of two blasts scheduled to take place several days apart. Using controlled explosives, the first blast will topple the pier above the water line. A tension line anchored on the Madison side of the river will be used to pull the pier toward the shoreline, controlling the direction of its fall. Once the old pier is safely resting on the shoreline, it will be broken into smaller pieces and hauled off site. A second blast will occur next week to fracture remaining portions of the pier under water so that they can be removed and hauled off.
While three other original water piers have been strengthened and are being reused, the pier targeted for demolition has been replaced with a new land pier in Madison. The 2,427-foot-long bridge, which is currently sitting on temporary piers, is expected to be slid onto the refurbished piers in March.