Crews finish fix on cracked 520 bridge pontoon

SEATTLE (AP) Crews in Oregon are done with repairs on one of cracked pontoons that will be part of the new Highway 520 floating bridge.

The state Department of Transportation said Friday that the pontoon will be towed by water from a Portland drydock to Lake Washington over the coming days. Officials have said that they will pay $48.8 million to contractor Kiewit-General-Manson to fix four pontoons that had developed cracks.

Washington transportation leaders acknowledged in February that design error led to the cracking, which prompted changes to the construction of the pontoons.

The bridge project has a budget of $2.7 billion and will replace the existing span that connects Seattle to Bellevue. Officials say the existing bridge must be replaced because it is vulnerable to earthquakes and wind storms.