Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - It might be a good idea to avoid the Highway 52/63 interchange in Rochester this weekend. Minnesota Department of Transportation spokesman Mike Dougherty says crews will be demolishing the bridge deck on the southbound lanes of Highway 52.

Prior to the actual demolition of the bridge deck, crews working on the bridge replacement project will be making cuts into the concrete during the day on Thursday. Dougherty says that will require short-term detours that will keep motorists from passing under the southbound Highway 52 bridge while the cutting is taking place. He says the detours will last one to three hours starting in the morning and lasting into the early afternoon.

The actual demolition of the bridge will disrupt traffic at the busy interchange through the weekend beginning Friday night. That’s when northbound traffic on Highway 63 will be detoured away from the interchange. The work will move to the section of bridge deck above the southbound lanes Saturday afternoon, which will shift southbound Highway 63 traffic into the northbound lanes until the demolition work is completed on Sunday.

Meanwhile, traffic on Highway 52 will continue on a single lane in each direction on the northbound lanes until the new southbound bridge deck is completed this summer.