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April 2, 2011

For Immediate Release

Madison – Governor Scott Walker is announcing plans to move forward on a project to make major improvements to the Hoan Bridge and the I-794 Freeway in downtown Milwaukee.

“The I-794 Freeway and the Hoan Bridge are key links in southeast Wisconsin’s transportation network,” said Governor Scott Walker.  “I’ve challenged the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) to begin design work this year to reconstruct the three segments of I-794, including the Hoan Bridge. This project will ensure connectivity with the Port of Milwaukee and economic vitality far into the future. The Hoan isn’t just any bridge –it’s a landmark of Milwaukee and a vital connection for Bay View, St. Francis, Cudahy, South Milwaukee and Oak Creek residents to downtown Milwaukee.” 

An in-depth inspection was initiated in 2010 to determine future needs of the Hoan Bridge.  The full report will be available this June; however initial findings indicate that the structural integrity remains intact and safe.  “Although continued maintenance projects have kept the bridge functional, a long-term solution is needed to keep this key route open for business,” said DOT Secretary Mark Gottlieb.

Construction will likely begin at the end of 2013 on a three-year project that will take place on three segments of I-794:


Hoan Bridge:

Remove and replace the existing bridge deck and make structural modifications.  In addition this project will repaint the bridge steel.  The bridge will be rebuilt in its current configuration between Lincoln Avenue to the south and the Lake Interchange (near Chicago Street) to the north. 


Lake Interchange (junction of I-794 from the Milwaukee River to the Hoan Bridge):

Perform concrete overlays and surface repairs on existing structures.

I-794 east/west (between the Marquette Interchange to the beginning of the Lake Interchange):

Remove and replace bridges with new structures.


Early cost estimates for this project are less than $300 million.

Work continues on the current Hoan Bridge project to patch and repair areas between just south of Carferry ramps to just north of the Michigan Street ramps.  Crews are on schedule to complete the project later this fall.