PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — CityLink is getting ahead of next month’s anticipated shutdown of the Bob Michel Bridge that connects Peoria to East Peoria.

The Bob Michel Bridge will be closed to motorized traffic for a $24.6 million renovation project for eight months starting March 13. Pedestrians will still be able to access the bridge.

“It’s something we’re glad we knew about in advance. Our buses that go into East Peoria use the Bob Michel Bridge every single day, and so we knew we’d have to make some rather jarring adjustments to some of the routes,” said Emily Watson, marketing director at CityLink.

CityLink is making adjustments for three affected routes: #20 ICC Express, #23 Pekin Connector and #8 East Peoria Sunnyland.

“Our hope is that most people are not going to feel too much of a disruption and that they’ll be able to still get access to the places they’re used to in East Peoria,” said Watson.

The adjusted routes start March 5 to align with operator signups. The extra week will also allow operators to become more familiar with the changes.

“It’s going to really be more of a change for the operators than for the passengers. They’ll probably get pretty used to the routing system quickly whereas our drivers are so used to the routes being what they are. I think it will take them a while to adjust to the new changes,” said Watson.

Watson said the #20 ICC Express will be impacted the most. It will switch to an hourly shuttle from its regular half-hour fixed bus route. The shuttle bus can accommodate up to 15 riders at a time.

“That was just the best way that we could determine we would still be able to service up to East Peoria. It’s something that’s obviously out of our control but we know it is for the greater good of the bridge and that bridge is going to be improved once it’s completed,” she said.

Watson encouraged riders to check the MyStop app for bus tracking information.