The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) celebrated the early reopening of the Woonsocket Hill Road Bridge in North Smithfield. The department closed the structurally deficient bridge in February and completed its replacement approximately one month ahead of schedule.
The bridge carries approximately 1,000 vehicles per day over Route 146. It serves as an important connection for residents and businesses between Route 5 (Providence Pike) and Route 146A (Smithfield Road), including the popular Wright's Dairy Farm and Bakery.
"All road and bridge segments are vitally important, no matter how many vehicles they serve," RIDOT Director Peter Alviti Jr. said. "We want the public to know that we are laser focused on rebuilding our transportation system, and whenever we need to close a road or bridge we work diligently to restore that connection in as short a time frame as possible."
"The town of North Smithfield is happy to return to a normal traffic pattern and grateful for the funding provided to complete the reconstruction of our Woonsocket Hill Road Bridge," said Town Administrator Gary S. Ezovski. "The entire community appreciates the effort of every worker whose hands created the structure and the managers who coordinated their efforts in a safe and deliberate manner."
RIDOT credits its project management approach to administering projects for careful oversight in reopening the bridge ahead of schedule. The department also conducted two sets of weekend closures of segments of Route 146 for bridge demolition and steel erection. This shaved several weeks off the project schedule and limited traffic impacts on Route 146 to two weekends as opposed to a multiple overnight partial and full road highway closures.
The replacement of the Woonsocket Hill Road Bridge is one of two bridges being rehabilitated as part of the $11.3 million Route 146 Corridor Bridges project. It was scheduled to remain closed through the end of December, but reopened on Nov. 21. The other structure, the Pound Hill Road Bridge, remains under construction through the end of 2019.
The Route 146 Corridor Bridges Project was 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.
For more information, visit www.ridot.net/RhodeWorks.