By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
After numerous delays and heavy traffic backup, the Alfredo Gozález Flores bridge over the Río Virilla is in the final phase of construction, according to engineers.
The bridge, commonly known as the platina, will be apparently open in a matter of days, according to Andrés Muñoz, the chief engineer in charge of the project. The installation of the expansion joints and the curing process has been complete and the project is finally close to complete after being shut down since January.
The bridge has been somewhat opened with two lanes opened between midnight and noon for traffic going toward the capital and then one lane for Alajuela. Those switch around noon.
The bridge is a part of the General Cañas and, prior to its closure, represented one of the most direct and quickest ways to get to and from San José and Juan Santamaría airport.
According to data provided by the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes, over 100,000 vehicles travel on the bridge each day and is the main connecting artery for the greater metropolitan area.
Muñoz said that, if necessary, partial closures will be applied to paint the lines on the asphalt but such closures will be given well in advance of their occurrence. He added that the new bridge may experience further closures even after its grand reopening so as to reconstruct the median dividing traffic.
In the upcoming days, crews will be painting the new lines on the bridge and installing the signage as well as placing pedestrian safety railing and lighting for the structure.