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Brandon Road bridge’s center lock breakdowns complicate travel

JOLIET TOWNSHIP – The Brandon Road bridge is working for the foreseeable future, but even the state’s bridge engineer doesn’t know how foreseeable that is.

The drawbridge over the Des Plaines River was fixed last week after being shut down for repairs for the fifth time since September 2016.

The constant breakdowns have frustrated people from the south end of Joliet and farther south who try to drive to Joliet while avoiding truck congestion on Route 53.

Brandon Road is one of the few alternatives, said Marcella Wilson, who lives in the Cedar Creek subdivision on the south side of the city.

“A lot of us have trouble going north because we don’t have many options. You have to get over the river,” Wilson said. “It’s always a challenge when the different bridges are out.”

Making the Brandon Road bridge work consistently over the past year has been a challenge for the Illinois Department of Transportation.

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