The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is scheduled to close the left lane on I-295 North and South on the Cumberland/Lincoln town line beginning Sunday, October 23, 2011, for work associated with the rehabilitation of the Blackstone Viaduct. The 688-foot bridge carries the Interstate over the Blackstone River, a Providence & Worcester Railroad line, and the Blackstone River Bikeway.
The closures, south of Exit 10 (Route 122/Mendon Road), will be in place for approximately two months. This will temporarily reduce the number of travel lanes on I-295 from three lanes to two lanes in each direction. However, the restriping of the highway may result in additional closures in each direction of I-295 on Sunday, October 23 and Monday, October 24 from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. each night.
Motorists should use caution driving along this section of I-295 and may encounter delays during peak travel times.
The closures are required for construction in the median areas on both sides of the bridge to accommodate future traffic pattern changes. When this work is completed in mid-December, RIDOT will restore the three-lane configuration on both sides of the highway for the winter. When construction resumes in Spring 2012, RIDOT will again close a lane in each direction. This closure will remain in place for approximately two years.
Through a $12.1 million bridge reconstruction contract with Cardi Corporation, RIDOT will replace the deck on the 47-year-old span.
Motorists with questions can contact RIDOT's Customer Service office at 401-222-2450 weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Additional information may be available on RIDOT's website at www.dot.ri.gov or its social media sites on Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and Blogger.
Contact: Charles St. Martin 401-222-1362 x4007