Manville Bridge closure expected to continue through summer

Manville Bridge closure expected to continue through summer

Large portions of the Manville Bridge have been demolished. The bridge is expected to remain closed through this summer, according to the Rhode Island Department of Transportation. (Breeze photo by Nicole Dotzenrod)

LINCOLN – Weather permitting, work on Lincoln’s Manville Bridge should be picking up steam this spring, but it will be several months before it reopens for traffic again.

The bridge, which carries Manville Hill Road over the Blackstone River, the Blackstone River Bikeway and the Providence/Worcester Railroad, closed for traffic last April. Since then, motorists have been detoured over the river via Route 99.

The bridge is expected to remain closed “through the summer of 2021,” according to the Rhode Island Department of Transportation, with project completion expected by this fall.

Manville Town Councilor Ken Pichette said he’s been keeping an eye on the project, and is planning to reach out to state elected officials to help ensure the project remains on target.

Crews began to demolish the bridge a few months ago as part of an $11 million RhodeWorks rehabilitation project, which calls for repairing the bridge piers and replacing its deteriorating deck and supporting steel beams.

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation declared that the bridge is structurally deficient, posting a weight limit of 10 tons prior to its closure that prohibited certain commercial vehicles from crossing the structure.

The 66-year-old bridge carries roughly 8,000 vehicles per day when open.