Franklin to close overnight for work on Knight Campus bridge

Overnight closures on Franklin Boulevard between Onyx and Agate streets are slated to begin July 8 while crews complete work on a skybridge, an important element of the new Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact.

Starting July 8 at 9 p.m. each evening and running until Labor Day, traffic will be reduced to one lane. At 10 p.m. all vehicular lanes will be closed in both directions, reopening to two lanes in each direction at 5 a.m. Clearly marked detours will guide traffic along Agate Street, East 18th Avenue, and Patterson and Hilyard streets.

The EmX bus and emergency vehicles are expected pass through the job site without being re-routed day and night. Work on the bridge is slated to be complete by Labor Day.


The bridge will connect the Lewis Integrative Science Building with the Knight Campus

  • Width: 14 feet (walking area)/48 feet, 2 inches (arch to arch)
  • Length: 190 feet
  • Height: 35 feet (top of walking area)/50 feet, 8 inches (top of arches)
  • Weight: Approximately 500 tons (bridge itself is 300 tons, concrete footings are more than 200 tons)
  • Building materials: Structural steel, glass and sheet metal

Closures are needed for crews to safely complete elements of the bridge that span the roadway. Signs will be posted on Interstate 5 to re-direct truck traffic bound for downtown Eugene to help minimize truck traffic in neighborhoods adjacent to campus. Other signs will be posted along Franklin Boulevard to address local traffic.

The bridge, which will connect the Lewis Integrative Science Building with the Knight Campus, is comprised of a structural steel frame that uses two butterfly arches and suspension cables. Crews from multiple labor trades will erect the structure one half at a time, gradually increasing the load of the bridge until it is 100 percent self-supporting.

By gradually increasing the loading, crews will be able to frequently test and retest structural integrity along the way. The construction plan underwent an independent third-party engineering evaluation to ensure maximum safety. 

A third-party special inspector will provide an independent inspection of all bolted and welded connections as well. At the end of every night of work, the structure will be secure and safe for vehicles to travel under during the following day.

Once the structure is erected, it will then receive finish paint, architectural sheet metal panels, curtain wall glazing and interior finishes such as doors and flooring. The bridge is scheduled to be structurally complete by Labor Day, but will not open until the Knight Campus does, in the late spring of 2020.

Updates, lane closure schedules and detour routes are available on the Knight Campus website’s construction and traffic section.