Traffic plan laid out for start of Ottawa High School year with ongoing bridge construction

Ottawa police will assist with traffic control at various spots

Traffic was stalled at Veterans Memorial Bridge in Ottawa during the evening commute Friday, June 24, 2022.

The Ottawa Police Department will be assisting with traffic control at various locations with the anticipated increase of vehicle and pedestrian traffic next week near Veterans Memorial Bridge and Main Street with the conjunction of the ongoing bridge construction and the beginning of the school year for Ottawa High School.

The first full day of school is Tuesday, Aug. 9.

Officers will be assisting at times at about the start of school in the morning and will return at times at about dismissal in the afternoon to relieve, not eliminate, the additional congestion and backup that is anticipated near the bridge.

Those students walking to Ottawa High School from the south side will use the walkway on the west side of the bridge, as the east pedestrian walkway will be closed. Students will be directed to proceed back under the bridge and to school via the river walk to East Main Street.

Southbound Route 23 (La Salle Street) should use the far right lane for through traffic. Traffic turning onto Main Street to the high school should use the far-left lane.

Northbound Route 23 (Columbus Street) will have the intersection with Main Street police-controlled during peak school traffic times.

School drop-off zones will be modified to minimize disruption to Route 23 traffic. As such, all drop offs before school and pick ups after school for students will take place in the Ottawa High School student parking lot.

Beginning 30 minutes before the start of the school day at 7:30 a.m. until 15 minutes after the school day at 8:15 a.m. all westbound traffic on Main Street will be prohibited. During the times when westbound traffic is not allowed on Main Street all vehicle traffic will be routed east on Main Street to Green Street.

Work consists of removing and replacing the bridge expansion joints, deck slab patching and structural repairs. One lane will remain open during the $2.6 million project, which is scheduled to be completed by fall.

A map supplied by the Ottawa Police Department of where they will be stationed to help traffic during the Ottawa High School arrival and dismissal times.