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Travel Advisory: RIDOT Closing Park Avenue Railroad Bridge in Cranston on May 15

Starting Saturday, May 15, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) will close the Park Avenue Railroad Bridge in Cranston to all traffic for approximately four months for demolition and reconstruction. The bridge carries Park Avenue (Route 12) over Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, between Elmwood Avenue (Route 1) and Wellington Avenue.

During the closure motorists will follow a detour using Elmwood Avenue (Route 1) and Wellington Avenue. The estimated travel time is 6-10 minutes. A detour map is available at To accommodate pedestrians, RIPTA will run a free shuttle around the bridge at 30-minute intervals from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. More details are available at

RIDOT is taking steps to replace this bridge as quickly as possible, and plans to reopen it to traffic prior to the start of school this fall. The $11.7 million project includes the use of an early contractor involvement procurement method, in which a contractor was engaged early in the design process to identify the best solutions for construction prior to the start of work.

RIDOT will use accelerated bridge construction methods including pre-fabricated bridge units (PBUs). Each PBU is composed of a concrete deck piece with two steel beams underneath it. The units are installed side-by-side to rapidly create a new bridge deck, saving considerable time compared to the conventional approach of forming and pouring a concrete bridge deck. These steps will allow the Department to complete the project up to three months faster than using conventional methods.

The Park Avenue Railroad Bridge is a structurally deficient wood deck bridge that dates back to 1906. It carries 15,000 vehicles per day and is a vital link for the Park Avenue business area. Final completion is expected in summer 2022.

All construction projects are subject to changes in schedule and scope depending on needs, circumstances, findings, and weather.

The replacement of the Park Avenue Railroad Bridge 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

Related links

  • Department or agency: Department of Transportation
  • Online:
  • Release date: 04-30-2021

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