The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) announced the project to rehabilitate the bridge deck on the elevated portion of Interstate 91 is open for bids.
MassDOT is undertaking the I-91 viaduct rehabilitation project to replace the existing deck of the bridge, which is in poor condition. The elevated viaduct carries I-91 through Springfield, with the I-291 Interchange to the north and State Street to the south. On an average day, I-91 carries approximately 75,000 vehicles, with 90,000 vehicles using the I-91/291 Interchange. The viaduct is the primary north-south route between Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont, and it experiences extensive vacation traffic during the weekends in the summer and winter.
“It is important that we rebuild our infrastructure to keep up with the growing needs of the region, rather than delaying much needed repairs for the next generation,” said Gov. Patrick. “This project allows for connections to neighboring states and will help to continue the restoration of economic vitality in western Massachusetts.”
The project will use accelerated bridge construction techniques to reduce the number of traffic stages and keep construction duration to a minimum. Once completed, the I-91 viaduct deck replacement project will reduce annual maintenance costs, increase safety and accessibility on this busy interstate, and ensure long-term serviceability.
“MassDOT will employ accelerated bridge construction techniques in order to expedite construction and reduce traffic-related impacts to the public,” said MassDOT Secretary and CEO Richard A. Davey. “Our goal is to reduce the number of traffic stages and keep construction to a minimum.”
The proposed bridge cross section will be similar to the existing bridge width, with a wider left shoulder, three travel lanes and a wider right shoulder. Two travel lanes in each direction will be open during construction for the length of the project.
Once the procurement process is complete, MassDOT expects work to get under way in early 2015. Construction is expected to finish by Fall 2017.
The existing viaduct was built in the late 1960s and generally consists of a concrete deck slab supported on steel girders. The girders are supported by steel pier caps, column piers, and footings with pile foundations. Several rehabilitation projects were performed on the structures over the past 25 years; however, in recent inspections, MassDOT found that the bridge deck needs to be replaced.
For more information on the I-91 viaduct rehabilitation project, visit http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/highway/HighlightedProjects/I91ViaductRehabilitation.aspx.