RIDOT Removes Weight Limit for Great Island Bridge

Tue December 22, 2015 - Northeast Edition

Great Island Bridge, Narragansett, R.I.
Great Island Bridge, Narragansett, R.I.

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) announced that it has partially opened the new Great Island Bridge in Narragansett, removing a weight limit that prohibited large trucks from crossing the span for the past 20 years. The bridge is the only point of access to Great Island, located in the fishing village of Galilee.

Phased construction will continue on the 180-ft.-long (54.86 m) structure with a single-lane alternating traffic pattern controlled by a temporary traffic signal. The project is on budget and approximately 200 days ahead of schedule. Substantial completion is expected in spring 2017.

“While Great Island is largely a residential community, the weight limit was a hardship, affecting everything from oil trucks to delivery trucks,” said Peter Alviti Jr., RIDOT director. “We have about 80 weight-limited bridges in Rhode Island. With proper investment in our infrastructure, we can bring all bridges into a state of good repair and get rid of these restrictions that are bad for residents and bad for business.”

RIDOT is building a new bridge through an $8.5 million project with MIG Corporation. Originally constructed in 1959, the Great Island Bridge was considered structurally deficient, posted at 12 tons (10.89 t) for 2-axle vehicles, 18 tons (16.33 t) for 3-axle vehicles and 28 tons (25.4 t) for 5-axle vehicles.

The new bridge will feature 6-ft. (1.83 m) sidewalks on both sides of the bridge, decorative lighting and an improved channel width that’s three times wider than the original bridge.

For more information, visit www.dot.ri.gov.