What a lot of people don’t know though is that the opening of the interchange marks the completion of the first half NSC. Last month, the Francis to Farwell/Southbound Lanes project also wrapped up, resulting in 5.7 miles of the planned 10 ½ mile corridor open to traffic.
That means we’re only five miles away from linking the NSC with Interstate 90 and construction starts today at Francis, working toward the river. The Francis Avenue Bridge Replacement and Intersection Improvements is the first of six construction phases needed to complete the NSC between the Spokane River and Francis Avenue. The existing 160 foot-long Francis Avenue bridge will be removed and replaced by a new structure with a 450 foot span to provide room for the BNSF Railway and NSC facilities to pass underneath. During construction, a temporary route, with an at-grade railroad crossing, will be in place for Francis Avenue traffic. The new bridge is scheduled to open to traffic in 2014.