Governor Gina Raimondo and Rhode Island Department of Transportation Director Peter Alviti Jr. marked the start of construction season today with a groundbreaking for repairs to the Horton Farm Bridge in East Providence.
The Horton Farm Bridge, which carries the East Shore Expressway to I-195 West in East Providence, is rated as structurally deficient. Today's groundbreaking marks the first project in this year's construction season.
More than 110 projects, representing both new and continuing work, will be active in 2018. The projects, which total an estimated $890 million worth of construction, include the long-awaited Route 6-10 Interchange project, repairs and bridge preservation efforts on more than 180 bridges, and scores of resurfacing and traffic safety improvements statewide.
Since the passage of RhodeWorks, RIDOT has increased its construction investment in the state. RIDOT's capital program reached $152 million in 2016 and rose to $569 million in 2017.
"Our hard work is paying off. Efforts to rebuild our transportation system have been ongoing since the start of RhodeWorks, but this year the public will see a level of transportation construction we have never seen before as hundreds of millions of dollars of work gets underway," Governor Raimondo said. "There are more construction jobs in Rhode Island right now than at any other time in the last decade. We have to keep building on that momentum."
"Our roads and bridges have been in disrepair for too long," RIDOT Director Peter Alviti, Jr. said. "We are turning the tide and are about to embark on our busiest road construction season ever. We are grateful for the Governor's RhodeWorks program to provide us with the financial resources to rebuild our roads and bridges and create jobs."
The Horton Farm Bridge was not properly maintained. Although is it only 34 years old, this large bridge has severe concrete and steel deterioration. RIDOT will replace the entire superstructure of the bridge at a cost of $16.6 million. RIDOT's asset management approach to bridge maintenance ensures that this kind of neglect will not occur again.
The Horton Farm Bridge project requires closure of half the bridge starting in early June. It will reopen this fall, followed by the closure of one of the two travel lanes next spring before the project wraps up in Fall 2019. In June, RIDOT will conduct two full weekend closures of one direction of I-195 at the bridge to start demolition. RIDOT will utilize crossover lanes and have at least two lanes of travel open in both directions on one side of the highway while doing demolition on the other side. The full weekend closures allow RIDOT to complete the work faster.
The Horton Farm Bridge Replacement Project was 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.