Planned repair work on the University Bridge expected to begin next year could mean traffic problems for Saskatoon motorists.

City council voted Monday night to approve a $1.3-million engineering study of the structure to take place this year. Based on what that report says the city could be on the hook for up to $20 million in repairs on the almost 100-year-old bridge.

Repair work on the structure is expected to start in 2014, but first the city will have to decide whether to completely shut down the bridge during the construction period or have the work done with a partial shutdown of traffic that would see one lane remain open in either direction.

The option of working on the bridge 24 hours a day was also brought up during discussion at council Monday night.

Coun. Troy Davies, a paramedic, reminded council that the bridge is a key link when it comes to transporting patients to hospital, saying he hopes it can remain at least partially open at all times.