Weather permitting, bridge scheduled to close on Tuesday, January 2, 2018
The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) has announced the second closure for the historic Slatersville Stone Arch Bridge that carries approximately 8,000 vehicles per day on Route 5 (Providence Pike) over the Branch River in North Smithfield. The bridge, which is currently being rehabilitated, is scheduled to close on Tuesday, January 2, 2018 and remain closed through December 2018, weather permitting.
This is the second closure for the bridge, which was closed last May for about three months. The original schedule called for the second closure to take place next summer, but, in conjunction with the town, RIDOT's Project Management team advanced the work to begin in January. This approach will allow tasks associated with the closure to be completed in less time, one year instead of a year and a half.
During the closure period, RIDOT will reconstruct the arch bridge. The first steps, slated for January and February, are the removal and excavation of the existing roadway and the majority of the stone arch. Once this is done, the Department will begin to refill the arch with concrete, and rebuild the historic stone walls to mirror their original state. This will be followed by installation of the precast deck panels that will sit on top of the arch and ultimately carry the traffic, plus sidewalks and railing.
The bridge, part of the Slatersville Historic District, is the oldest documented masonry bridge in Rhode Island, dating back to 1855. Deemed structurally-deficient since 2007, it is currently posted at 20 tons. Due to its current state of disrepair, RIDOT closed half the bridge back in 2013 and installed temporary traffic signals for a single-lane alternating traffic pattern on the bridge, causing traffic delays in the village.
The total cost of the project, taking into account added costs associated with accelerating the project, the historic preservation efforts, and additional steps to meet environmental restrictions, is $13.5 million.
The project, which primarily features daytime construction, also includes upgrades to portions of Main Street and Route 5 (Railroad Street/Providence Pike), such as resurfacing, bringing all existing curbing, sidewalks and walkways into Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance, adding new signing and striping, and some minor drainage and intersection improvements. During the closures, motorists are advised to follow the recommended detour using the turn-by-turn directions described below. Local access will be maintained. Get detour maps at www.ridot.net/detourmaps.
Northbound Car Detour:
Turn right onto Industrial Drive (Approx. ¼ mile before the bridge); Industrial Drive turns into Pound Hill Road; Pass under Route 146 overpass, turn left for Route 146 North on-ramp; Take the Forestdale/Slatersville exit; At end of ramp, turn left onto School Street; Bear left onto Greene Street; Return to Route 5
Northbound Truck Detour:
Turn right onto Industrial Drive (Approx. ¼ mile before the bridge); Industrial Drive turns into Pound Hill Road; Pass under Route 146 overpass, turn left for Route 146 North on-ramp; Take the Forestdale/Slatersville exit; At end of ramp, turn right onto School Street; Turn left onto Route 146A; Follow 1.5 miles to return to Route 5
Southbound Car Detour:
Turn left onto Greene Street; Bear right onto School Street; Turn left onto Route 146A; Turn left for on-ramp to Route 146 South; Take the Pound Hill Road exit; Turn right at end of the ramp onto Pound Hill Road; Pound Hill Road becomes Industrial Drive; Return to Route 5
Southbound Truck Detour:
Turn left onto Route 146A; Drive South (Approx. ½ mile before the bridge); Use on-ramp for Route 146 South; Take the Pound Hill Road exit; Turn right at end of the ramp onto Pound Hill Road; Pound Hill Road becomes Industrial Drive; Return to Route 5
The Slatersville Stone Arch Bridge rehabilitation project is made possible by RhodeWorks, RIDOT's ongoing commitment to repair structurally deficient bridges and bring Rhode Island's transportation infrastructure into a state of good repair, promote economic development, and create jobs. Learn more at www.ridot.net/RhodeWorks.