Bridge Between New Hampshire, Maine Closes Permanently

Fri September 09, 2011 - Northeast Edition

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) One of the three bridges that connect Portsmouth, N.H, and Kittery, Maine, has abruptly closed. And there are no plans to reopen the span.

New Hampshire officials said an inspection revealed numerous structural problems with the Route 1 bridge that appeared to be accelerating, so it was closed permanently on July 27. Transportation Department spokesman Bill Boynton said Memorial Bridge has “too many problems in too many places.”

New Hampshire and Maine are working together to build a new bridge but the replacement won’t be ready until June 2014. Until then, motorists will use the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge or the I-95 bridge.

The goal had been to keep Memorial Bridge in operation for another year. Boyton said the early closure may help to speed construction of the new bridge.