Minnesota Reaches Settlement as New Bridge Is 65% Complete
Tudor Van Hampton / ENR

orkers near the Mississippi River in Minneapolis pulled the first 200-ton concrete box-girder segments off a precast assembly line for the new Interstate 35W bridge’s main span as state lawmakers in St. Paul on May 2 passed a $38-million bill to compensate victims of last August’s bridge collapse, which killed 13 people and injured 145. If signed into law, a court-appointed panel of special masters would cap most payouts at $400,000, though it could award extra funds to survivors with severe losses. Existing state law caps claims at $1 million per incident. Payouts would be due next spring and would remove the state and public agencies from liability, but they would not protect private firms. Lawyers representing the victims say they may target Progressive Contractors Inc. and URS Corp., which worked on the old bridge. No suits have yet been filed.