Downtown bridge to be demolished for High-Speed Rail

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Come Monday morning some of you driving in the Downtown area may have to find an alternative route.

Prep work for the high-speed rail project will involve the demolition of the Tuolumne Street bridge. The bridge between Broadway and F Street will soon be torn down.

The one-way bridge moves cars east into downtown Fresno but now the traffic pattern will change for those who work or live in the area. California High-Speed Rail Authority spokesperson Toni Tinoco explained, "This bridge needs to come down to make clearance for a high-speed rail train. Right now it has clearance for union pacific railroad but for a high-speed rail train it needs to be higher."

The train tracks will remain in use. Crews have begun preparations for the demolition which should take about three months. By November, the new bridge is expected to be in place and, unlike the old one, it will offer two-way traffic.

On Monday, motorists will notice posted signs in the area. Tinoco said, "Making sure that everyone's aware of our detours around Tuolumne bridge and that's through downtown Fresno."

The project is in the path of Coffee Break Service which has sold its building to the California HSR Authority. The business must be empty by Monday. Co-owner Jerry Dale said, "It's been quite a squeeze kind of because we were not involved in any of this until April."

The business has been here since 1968 though the Dale Brothers family business was established next door in 1936. The company has found both temporary and permanent buildings to move into. Dale said, "It's probably not too bad of an inconvenience. We're able to de-clutter our building. That's been a plus."

During construction portions of G and H streets at Tuolumne may have to be closed on occasion.
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