Built in 1954, the Shoemaker Bridge is set to be replaced by a newer, safer bridge. Photo by Jason Ruiz

Part of the Shoemaker Bridge, which connects drivers in Downtown Long Beach to the northbound 710 Freeway, has been closed indefinitely for repairs after a truck crash damaged a portion of the bridge.

The closure began last Monday, Jan. 29, when someone driving a truck on the northbound connector struck the underside of the Shoemaker Bridge where it passes over the connector from the eastbound Long Beach International Gateway Bridge to the northbound 710 Freeway, according to city officials.

A map of the closures at Shoemaker Bridge. Courtesy of the city of Long Beach.

The northbound right-hand lane of the Shoemaker Bridge will be closed while repairs are made, officials said. It will likely remain closed, along with the bridge’s off-ramp to Ninth Street in West Long Beach, until crews can fix the damage.

City officials warned that drivers commuting through northbound Shoreline Drive and Shoemaker Bridge from the Ocean Boulevard, Third Street, and Seventh Street on-ramps can expect delays due to the lane closure.

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The southbound lanes of the bridge and the connector from the Long Beach International Gateway Bridge to the northbound 710 remain open, but the area may be closed off completely to allow for repairs once the city finishes assessing the issue, according to officials.

The aging Shoemaker Bridge is slated to be replaced by 2028, with the city revealing updated plans for the $900 million project last month.

Renderings of the project show a modern cable-stayed bridge with 240-foot tall angled arches that meet in the middle of the 765-foot-wide bridge. Building the new structure is part of a plan to realign Shoreline Drive, which would significantly change how drivers enter and exit the 710 Freeway Downtown.

It will also add 5.6 acres of park space to the Downtown area.

A rendering showing the proposed roundabout that would connect Shoreline Drive and Seventh Street to the proposed Shoemaker Bridge replacement project. Photo courtesy city of Long Beach