Closure necessary as part of Washington Bridge Rehabilitation Project
The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is reminding motorists of the upcoming long-term closure of the Gano Street (Exit 3) off-ramp on I-195 West in Providence. Effective August 20, the ramp will be closed through Fall 2019 as part of the rehabilitation of the Washington Bridge, which carries I-195 West from East Providence to Providence.
During the closure, traffic heading to Gano Street and the East Side should use Exit 2 (South Main Street). A signed detour will be established using Pike Street, South Water Street and India Street to return to Gano Street. To better accommodate detouring traffic, RIDOT will close a small section of South Main Street, from India Street to Tockwotton Street, and a section of Tockwotton Street, between South Main Street and South Water Street.
These changes will create a safe work zone in which RIDOT can begin rehabilitation of the northern half of the Washington Bridge in the shortest amount of time. The area under construction is directly in the path of travel for vehicles that normally use the Gano Street off-ramp.
Also as part of this project, RIDOT will conduct two overnight closures of the Taunton Avenue on-ramp to I-195 West. The closures are scheduled for August 15 and 16 from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. each night, and are needed to finalize construction of a temporary on-ramp that Taunton Avenue traffic will use during bridge construction. RIDOT modified its construction schedule so it no longer needs a full weekend closure of the ramp, as was previously announced.
During the temporary closure of the Taunton Avenue on-ramp, traffic will be directed to follow a detour to the Broadway on-ramp for I-195 West, utilizing Valley Street and Warren Avenue.
The temporary on-ramp will go into service on August 20 and will significantly reduce the impact of Washington Bridge construction for motorists in East Providence who normally access I-195 using this ramp.
Detour maps are available on RIDOT's website at www.ridot.net/DetourMaps.
In Fall 2019, RIDOT will reopen the currently closed Veterans Memorial Parkway and Warren Avenue on-ramps. The entire $22.3 million Washington Bridge project wraps up in Fall 2020.
This portion of the Washington Bridge is a separate structure from the portion which carries eastbound traffic, which RIDOT replaced in the late 2000s. It has been more than 20 years since the last major rehabilitation of the westbound bridge, which was built in 1969 and carries 70,000 vehicles per day. The bridge is structurally deficient. It would be more than twice as costly to replace the westbound portion of the Washington Bridge as it is to repair it.
The Washington Bridge Rehabilitation 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.