Saturday, July 20, 2019

More trouble on the I-880 railroad overpass

Large Pothole Opens Up on I-880 in Oakland; Multiple Lanes Blocked

The pothole, over Jackson Street, opened up in the No. 3 lane on southbound I-880, the CHP said, but the Nos. 1 and 2 lanes also were closed for the repair work.

Lane number 3, in this section, is of course the only lane that the Port of Oakland container cargo trucks are allowed to use through that stretch of the highway.

They spent so much time and effort on the section of 880 in downtown Oakland where it crosses the Union Pacific Railroad Tracks. That was an *enormous* engineering project!

It was partly for seismic retrofit and partly for traffic issues; the southbound on-ramp from 5th & Oak onto southbound 880 is well-known as one of the most dangerous on-ramps in the entire California road system.

But that bridge (12 lanes wide in sections!!) is still very troubled.

Not only was there that giant hole in the southbound lanes yesterday, but the northbound section of the bridge is separating at the earthquake expansion joint near the apex of the bridge just by the Laney College parking lot, and 3 of the four northbound lanes have enormous steel plates covering the gap in the expansion joint.

I have no idea how or when this can be solved, but it's certainly a great illustration of just how hard it is to build adequate civil engineering structures, even when you try very very hard.

Of course, one of the huge problems in this area is that this is the only road that the Oakland port container cargo traffic can use, so it bears a *very* heavy burden of constant fully-loaded cargo traffic.

But still, that was all well-known when Caltrans built the bridge.

Anyone know if there's a Caltrans project page which covers the ongoing issues with this bridge?

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