The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is planning for a rapid bridge replacement of the East Shore Expressway Bridge in East Providence in just 80 hours beginning Friday, September 9.
According to the agency, conventional replacement would take a year and cause prolonged traffic congestion.
The bridge carries traffic from Interstate 195 East at Exit 7 to the East Shore Expressway southbound.
The East Shore Expressway Bridge has been classified as functionally obsolete and has “significant” concrete cracking which has caused a 17-ton weight limit to be placed on the structure for more than four years. As a result, most truck traffic has been diverted onto city streets.
In addition to closing the bridge and Exit 7 on I-195, RIDOT will close part of Warren Avenue underneath. The closure begins a 9 p.m. on September 9. The old bridge will then be demolished and the new bridge foundations will be completed. The entire superstructure for the new bridge, which was built in temporary staging areas on supports next to the old bridge, will then be installed. RIDOT plans to open the new bridge to traffic no later than 5 a.m. on September 13.