The work is scheduled for the first three weekends of November, Jiří Veselý from the Directorate of Roads and Highways (ŘSD) told ČTK today.
Workers will be replacing damaged cement concrete slabs so the roadway can withstand the onslaught of traffic until the major reconstruction. During it, the builders should gradually dismantle it and a completely new bridge will begin to be built on the historical arch.
During the current temporary repairs, traffic between the 23rd and 24th kilometers will be reduced to one lane, alternately in the direction of Prague and Brno. The exception will be the second weekend of November, when from Saturday November 11, 14:00 to Sunday, November 12, 10:00, traffic through the repair site will be limited to one lane in each direction. At all times, the maximum permitted speed will be reduced to 80 kilometers per hour.
The repair of the oldest highway bridge in the Czech Republic began this summer and has not yet affected traffic in any way, the workers were working under the bridge. Work on the bridge is scheduled to begin next year. Traffic will be conducted in the mode of two plus two narrowed lanes on one half of the bridge at a reduced speed, while work will be done on the other.
The planned November repairs are still provisional. “This is about eliminating road defects before the winter season and before the traffic restrictions that will take place in the vicinity of the bridge and on it itself in the coming years in connection with its reconstruction,” said Veselý.
The Šmejkalka bridge was not part of the reconstruction of D1, which ended last year in autumn. The contract for its repair was issued separately, using the Design and Build method. The ŘSD provided the contractor with land and a building permit, detailed design was already within his competence. The contract was awarded to the association of companies Strabag and Pragoprojekt, the bridge is being repaired for 965 million crowns without VAT. The reconstruction should be completed in 2027.
The Šmejkalka bridge spans the Hrusický stream and the valley between Senohraby and Turkovice at a height of 46 meters. It is the oldest building on the D1 highway, built between 1939 and 1949. The right arch under the lanes in the direction of Brno was concreted in 1941, the left one five years later. The length of the construction was significantly affected by the Second World War, during which work was interrupted. The workers completed the construction of the supporting structure after the war. Between 1973 and 1977, they worked on its modifications. Subsequently, the bridge was put into operation during the completion of the D1 highway from Prague to Brno. In 1991, the bridge was completely repaired. The current reconstruction is the largest in the entire history of the bridge.