East Lyme meeting to discuss bridge replacement set for 2016

East Lyme - The state Department of Transportation is planning to replace the Route 1 bridge over the Pattagansett River in 2016.

Construction on the 85-year-old, two-lane bridge between Mill and Upper Pattagansett Roads is slated to begin in spring 2016, according to a DOT notice, and be completed in the fall.

The department will hold a public information meeting on the proposed project at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 13, at Town Hall.

The estimated $1.5 million bridge project calls for a precast frame structure attached to wingwalls and concrete footings that are reinforced by piles, the notice stated. The road will be about 44 feet wide "curb-to-curb" with a 9-foot shoulder on its eastbound side and a 5-foot shoulder and 5 foot sidewalk on its westbound side.

The current bridge, which is a little more than 42 ft. from "curb-to-curb," stands on stone-masonry abutments and wingwalls, according to the DOT.

Michael Washington, transportation supervising engineer for the DOT, said the plans will improve the bridge's hydraulics during flooding and modernize its structures.

During the two phases of construction in 2016, cars will be able to pass using alternate one-way traffic. Signals will direct traffic over the bridge, which carried about 8,700 cars last year, according to the DOT.

The first construction phase will occur between the beginning of April to mid-June 2016. The DOT will stop construction during the summer because of traffic concerns, but will pick up again after Sept. 5.

The DOT also stated that power lines will need to be moved for the roadwork and that there are potential "rights-of-way" impacts north of the project.

A rights-of-way representative will be present at the meeting to connect with residents whose properties abut the bridge area, according to Mary Baker, a DOT transportation engineer. The DOT will review the design plans after listening to comments at the meeting and then make any necessary changes, she added.

Individuals may request language assistance for the Jan. 13 meeting by calling the DOT's communications office at (860) 594-3062 by Jan. 6, according to the notice. In the case of bad weather, the meeting will be rescheduled for Monday, Jan.27.



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