The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) has completed a traffic pattern change for Route 1 on the Narragansett/South Kingstown line in conjunction with a bridge rehabilitation project. The pattern will be in effect for approximately one year.
Earlier this month, RIDOT closed one of two northbound lanes in preparation for moving all travel lanes to the bridge carrying Route 1 southbound traffic. Motorists on Route 1 will find shifted lanes with two travel lanes southbound and one northbound.
This change is necessary to allow for demolition of the northbound bridge. The current construction schedule involves opening a new northbound bridge by early Summer 2010, at which time the southbound bridge will be closed and the all traffic moved to the new bridge with the same pattern – two lanes southbound and one lane northbound.
By Fall 2010, the new southbound bridge is scheduled to be finished and the original traffic pattern will be restored. In conjunction with this project, RIDOT has closed the on-ramp to Route 1 North from the corner of Route 108 (Point Judith Road), Woodruff Avenue and South Pier Road to rehabilitate another bridge. It is scheduled to re-open until Fall 2010 as well. In the interim, traffic will be detoured a short distance north to another on-ramp to Route 1 North, at the Dillon’s Corner Rotary.
Related to this work, RIDOT made numerous improvements to the Rotary and Route 108 to help move traffic through the area safely. One of these changes involves the loss of one lane on Route 108 South.
The closures are necessary as part of a $6.6 million project to rehabilitate three bridges in the area – two that carry Route 1 over Route 108 and the bridge carrying the ramp to Route 1 North. The project is being funded entirely by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. All three bridges are more than 45 years old.
RIDOT will closely monitor traffic on Route 1 for congestion issues, particularly during the busy summer beach season. Traffic volumes are heavier for southbound traffic than they are for northbound traffic. By completely closing one bridge at a time, RIDOT can finish the project in the shortest timeframe possible.
Motorists who have questions about this project are urged to contact RIDOT’s Customer Service office weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 222-2450.
Contact: Charles St. Martin 401-222-1362 x4007