The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) today announced a change in this week’s overnight highway closure plan in Providence. Tonight, Thursday, January 29, 2009, RIDOT will close the ramp from I-195 West to I-95 North. I-95 North will not be closed as previously announced, however, lane restrictions are planned with at least one lane remaining open at all times.
The change in schedule is prompted by another night of excellent progress in the demolition of former Pine Street and Friendship Street overpasses. Earlier this week on Tuesday, RIDOT was able to cancel a planned overnight closure because demolition contractor Testa Corporation was able to complete two nights’ worth of planned work in one night. The same thing occurred last night. All steel beams for both overpasses have been completely removed with the exception of beams on the former Pine Street overpass that span the I-195 West to I-95 North ramp.
Tonight, motorists may encounter lane closures beginning at 8 p.m. with the full closure of the I-195 West to I-95 North ramp taking place at 11 p.m. All lanes are scheduled to be reopened by 5 a.m., prior to the morning commute.
Motorists traveling through the closure area are urged to seek alternate routes. RIDOT will establish a detour for motorists on I-195 West who are bound for I-95 North by using Exit 2 to South Main Street. The detour follows South Main Street to Steeple Street to Memorial Boulevard to the on-ramp for I-95 North near Providence Place Mall. The closure does not affect the ramp from I-195 West to I-95 South, and as such, access to the Rhode Island hospitals complex will not be affected.
The closure schedule is subject to change. All work is weather dependent. The outcome of tonight’s work will determine whether RIDOT needs to schedule any more overnight closures next week.
RIDOT will use signage and electronic message boards to alert motorists of the closure and detour routes. Up-to-date traveler information and detour maps are available on the Department’s website, www.dot.ri.gov. Information is also available by dialing 511 (1-888-401-4511 for out of state callers), listening to 1630 AM on RIDOT’s Highway Advisory Radio, or by calling RIDOT’s Customer Service office at 401-222-2450 on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.