Special Reports

BRIDGE UPDATE

Construction this week on the new Tacoma Narrows bridge:

As of Thursday, both caissons are sitting squarely on the bottom of the Tacoma Narrows, a major milestone for Tacoma Narrows Constructors.

Crews will continue building interior and exterior walls on top of the caissons this week, then start preparing to sink them farther by dredging out material beneath them.

Four caisson pours are scheduled this week - Monday and Thursday on the Gig Harbor side, and Tuesday and Friday on the Tacoma side.

Crews will pour concrete on the Tacoma-side anchorage Tuesday as long as caisson work, which has priority, doesn't interfere.

Assembly of the 100-foot tower crane at the west end of the bridge is complete. The crane will begin lifting reinforcing steel into the anchorage excavation Monday.

Tuesday, crews will pour the face of a large retaining wall just west of the new 24th Street Northwest overpass.

The right lane of westbound Highway 16 across the existing bridge will be closed from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday so crews can install chain-link fencing near the towers on the south bridge rail.

The fencing is intended to protect workers from falling debris.

Q&A

Q. Would you check into where a viewing site might be located for those of us who would enjoy watching the building of the new bridge?

DAWN BADGER, TACOMA

A. Sorry to report there is no good viewing area. The sidewalks on the existing bridge are next to impossible to get to because of construction. A planned viewing area at a county beach park on the Gig Harbor side is being held up until a parking lot and trail to the beach are paved.

There is a remote camera on the state Department of Transportation Web site, but it's so far away you can't see anything.

Rob Carson, The News Tribune

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