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Travel Advisory Reminder: Second Pontiac Avenue Bridge Slide to Take Place This Weekend

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is reminding motorists that the second weekend bridge slide for the Pontiac Avenue Bridge in Cranston is scheduled to begin Friday night, November 18. All roads are expected to reopen by 6 a.m. on Monday, November 21.

The bridge slide requires a closure of Pontiac Avenue at the Route 37 overpass. Parts of Route 37 East will be affected but travelers will access the Pontiac Avenue ramps to move easily on Route 37. RIDOT expects travel delays and strongly encourages travelers to consider alternate routes to access the busy Reservoir Avenue commercial district, including the Garden City and Chapel View shopping centers.

RIDOT constructed the new bridge decks along Pontiac Avenue adjacent to Route 37. Like last weekend, RIDOT will demolish one half of the bridge and slide the new bridge deck into place using multi-wheeled, self-propelled modular transporters.

The Department recommends drivers consider alternate routes such as Route 10 to Route 2, I-295 to Route 2 and I-295 to Route 37 to reach their destinations. Signed detours include:

Route 37 East: Use Exit 1E (Pontiac Avenue) to detour, getting back onto the highway using the nearby Route 37 East on-ramp. Police officers will be present to keep traffic flowing through the detour.

Pontiac Avenue Southbound: Use Sockanosset Cross Road westbound to Route 2 South to the on-ramp to Route 37 East.

Pontiac Avenue Northbound: Use the on-ramp to Route 37 East and use Exit 2B for I-95 North, looping back onto Route 37 West (Exit 31B) and taking the off-ramp at Exit 1E to Pontiac Avenue.

Detour maps are available at www.ridot.net/DetourMaps.

The bridge slides are a form of accelerated bridge construction that saves an additional 24 months compared to conventional construction methods. This rapid approach minimizes the overall disruption to traffic and the surrounding commercial districts, limiting noise and vehicle emissions associated with much longer duration construction projects.

This $75.9 million, multi-bridge project is repairing deficient bridges along the Route 37 corridor with preservation, major rehabilitation, and/or reconstruction of 15 bridge structures in Cranston and Warwick. Six of these bridges are structurally deficient. Four will be replaced and two other bridges will be rehabilitated. The project also includes safety improvements at the Pontiac Avenue interchange from Route 37 West.

Route 37 is a critical east-west freeway in central Rhode Island, linking the cities of Cranston and Warwick, major retail, office and residential areas, Interstate highways and Rhode Island T.F. Green International Airport. With a daily traffic count of 42,000 vehicles, Route 37 is one of the state's busiest corridors.

The project is funded in part by a $20 million federal TIGER grant secured by Rhode Island's Congressional delegation. It will be finished in spring 2023.

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

The Route 37 Project is made possible by RhodeWorks and the Bipartisan Infrastructure and Improvement Act. RIDOT is committed to bringing Rhode Island's infrastructure into a state of good repair while respecting the environment and striving to improve it. Learn more at www.ridot.net/RhodeWorks.

Related links

  • Department or agency: Department of Transportation
  • Online: http://www.dot.ri.gov
  • Release date: 11-16-2022

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