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Sabo bike bridge repairs begin Sunday

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Bridge cable failure closes light rail tracks
Train tracks for the light rail pass under the Martin Olav Sabo Bridge Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012, as workers attempt to stabiilze the bridge after one of its support cable broke loose Sunday night. Light-rail service was suspended between the 38th Street and Franklin Avenue stations, along with traffic on Hiawatha Avenue between 26th and 28th streets.
MPR Photo/Alex Kolyer

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Repairs begin next week on the Martin Olav Sabo Bridge in south Minneapolis.

Support cables on the bike and pedestrian bridge broke loose in February.

Engineers plan to install one retrofitted diaphragm plate on the 5-year-old bridge. Officials will monitor the plate over the next month to see how it performs.

A pair of suspension cables broke loose when one of the plates fractured last winter. An engineering firm hired to find the cause of the fracture concluded that wind-induced cable vibrations caused cracking in the plates. The replacement plate is designed to withstand the fatigue that caused the cracking.

The bridge will close to bike and pedestrian traffic at 7 a.m. Sunday so the repairs can be made. The bridge is expected to be closed for about a week.