With phase one of the Pocasset River Bridge Rehabilitation Project nearly completed, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) next week will start phase two of the project, shifting all traffic to the two newly reconstructed northbound lanes and eliminating the current weight limit on the bridge. The bridge is located between Garden City and Route 12 (Park Avenue) in Cranston.
The traffic pattern change is anticipated to occur on Monday, April 22, 2013. Since August 2012, traffic had used the two southbound lanes of the bridge.
Thanks to the elimination of the weight limit, the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) will be able to resume the use of larger buses to cross the bridge. During phase one of the project, it had to adjust routes and use smaller vehicles. This posed a major inconvenience to riders and RIPTA alike, with schedule adjustments and overcrowding issues. Now that service will be fully restored, RIPTA can fully accommodate the demand for service in the area, using larger buses to provide more frequent service.
Throughout the remainder of the construction project, slated to be completed in Fall 2013, at least one lane of travel will be maintained in each direction at all times, and access to local businesses near the bridge will be maintained. Those traveling through the area are still advised to allow extra time, especially during peak travel times, and reduce speed and drive carefully through the work zone.
The 86-year-old span was last rehabilitated in 1950. Through a $2.9 million contract with Cardi Corporation, the Department is demolishing and replacing the bridge deck and making numerous other improvements to the structure.
Those 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 will be available on RIDOT's social media sites on Twitter and Facebook.
Contact: Heidi Gudmundson (401) 222-1362, Ext. 4009