Washington Bridge Update

There is no good news really. One thing that should come as no surprise: Repairing the westbound bridge will take longer than three months, the original estimate. State officials should be commended for sharing this new reality which allows people and businesses to adjust expectations and plan accordingly. At a press conference yesterday RIDOT Director Peter Alviti suggested three different possible scenarios:

  • Repair of the existing structure.
  • Repair with reconstruction of various components of the bridge.
  • A complete rebuild of the entire bridge.

The state is waiting for reports from consultants and engineers. According to the ProJo:

Alviti said consultants have been brought in from all over the United States to help expedite the analysis and inspection of the bridge. The report with recommendations on how to fix the bridge is separate from a forensic analysis that’s also begun to determine how the bridge ended up in such bad condition it needed to be abruptly closed.

The stress and aggravation of the twice-daily traffic jam for commuters, business owners, and local residents can not be overstated; we can see it daily on the news. East Providence has been badly affected, and now the new timeline is “indefinite.” RIDOT hopes to expedite the project.

Regardless of the scope of work, Alviti said the state will utilize the “rapid construction” techniques they have used to rebuild over 400 bridges in the state in the last several years.

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