DOT marks milestone as Hoan Bridge project complete, Lakefront Gateway project begins

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MILWAUKEE -- As one project wraps up, another one begins. From the Hoan Bridge to Milwaukee's lakefront, things are changing downtown.

On Tuesday, December 15th, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held, celebrating the end of the Hoan Bridge construction project.

The project was completed on time and under budget.

But as one multi-million dollar venture ends, another begins.

"We are very proud of the project -- completed on time and under budget," Mark Gottlieb, Wisconsin Department of Transportation secretary said of the Hoan Bridge project's completion.

Hoan Bridge construction project

Hoan Bridge construction project

After two years of alternating closures and congestion, all lanes will reopen this weekend.

"The lifeline of the south shore suburbs. That is the bridge we all take to get to where we need to go anywhere in the city," Rep. Christine Sinicki (D-Milwaukee) said.

And as drivers cross the bridge unabated, they'll have a good view of the next project to get underway.

The Lakefront Gateway project involves the redesign of I-794's off-ramps to downtown Milwaukee and the Lakefront, and the opening of additional land for development.

Lakefront Gateway project

Lakefront Gateway project

"I think it was Rocky Marcoux who pointed out that right now, when you see a fence and a berm, it doesn't really give you the full 'wow' effect of what we have on the lakefront," Governor Scott Walker said.

Walker attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the Lakefront Gateway project Tuesday.

The project requires cooperation between state, county and city governments.

"We have one of the greatest access points to in terms of public availability to the lakefront and this one more way we can highlight that," Walker said.

Lakefront Gateway project

Lakefront Gateway project

So as the Lakefront Gateway project moves forward, leaders from the top down are adamant they have successfully crossed this bridge of collaboration.

"A really prime example of state and local units of government getting together to improve transportation and access and also create a great opportunity for economic development for downtown Milwaukee," Gottlieb said.<

The Hoan Bridge project cost about $200 million and should extend the life of the bridge by at least 40 years.

While all lanes are set to reopen on the bridge, two ramps will remain closed and restricted -- the I-794 EB off-ramp to Lincoln Memorial Drive and the southbound access over the Hoan Bridge from Lincoln.

READ IT: Governor Walker celebrates Hoan Bridge project completion, participates in Lakefront Gateway project groundbreaking.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Lakefront Gateway project.

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