Bridge Street bridge repairs underway – at night

by Beth Melo on January 15, 2014

Post image for Bridge Street bridge repairs underway – at night

Above: Bridge Street bridge is now under repair. All’s quiet during the day. Thanks to the light equipment above, fixes are happening after dark.

Last fall, the state closed the Bridge Street bridge to vehicle traffic. This caused major headaches for residents in that neighborhood. Now the repairs are underway. Unfortunately, repairs cause different headaches.

In August, Mass Transportation suddenly closed the bridge for safety reason. The closing was “indefinite” and town officials were told that it was on a list of 400 bridge repairs for the state.

In September, selectmen said the town was lobbying for the work to be expedited. They were citing the River Street bridge repairs, exacerbating detour traffic, as prioritizing the need.

Apparently, that worked.

Repair construction began this past Sunday and is expected to be completed within eight weeks. At that time, the neighborhood will have a much improved commute.

For now, it’s causing sleepless nights for project abutters. Construction is taking place from 10:00 pm until 6:00 am in the morning.

This is not a town project, so our officials can’t dictate the hours. 

According to Karen Galligan, Director of Southborough’s Department of Public Works, hours were determined by the railroad. Mass Highway required permitting from the MBTA to conduct the work.

Of course there is one other temporary inconvenience. Pedestrian traffic had been open on the bridge. For now, that is closed as well.

The estimated project timeline:

  • Demolishing the deck, about 2 weeks
  • Erecting the new bridge, another 2-3 weeks
  • Completing project, by the end of the 8 weeks

Galligan said the town was happy Mass Highway was able to expedite the project for residents. Recently, they weren’t sure it could happen “even within 18 months”.

1 Tessa Stephens January 15, 2014 at 12:30 PM

Thank you Beth for the article. Please let me tell you that (via the DPW), there is not “one other temporary inconvenience. Pedestrian traffic had been open on the bridge. For now, that is closed as well.” The ‘temporary inconveniences’ also include: lights on the bridge that light up our backyard like the sunniest summer day, trucks parked at the bottom of our driveway. Cigarette butts and empty coffee cups under my trees. Jack hammering and welding all through the night. I wonder how this is affecting the rest of the neighborhood. I hope you all chime in. I’ve contacted our state rep as well as the selectmen , Mr Purple, the interim police chief and the DPW. Our rep was the only one who said she’s was going to make phone calls, and Lt. James made sure the lights of the cruiser were not illuminating the homes on the street. If you’re up between 10 PM and 6 AM Sunday through Friday take a look at my backyard. You can see the individual blades of grass growing curtesy of the work lights.

2 beth January 15, 2014 at 12:46 PM

To clarify – it was my language, not DPW’s as to the additional temporary inconvenience. And that was meant to be in addition to “sleepless nights” from lights and noise.

3 John Kendall January 16, 2014 at 11:17 AM

Welcome to the world that we live in near the T station. Day and night to get the bridge replaced, and it’s been going on for quite awhile. At least Bridge Street will be fast, and will once again provide RAPID public safety access to the Bridge/Wood Street neighborhood. Don’t forget….river flooding shall commence soon enough!

4 Matthew January 16, 2014 at 11:55 AM

Not just RAPID but LARGE!!!
We will be thankfull when the large trucks start coming back down Parkerville so they can turn left onto Southville and over the bridge and then back again!
Lots of delivery trucks making shortcuts, fast drivers, loud motorcycles(sorry Barry). No one should be fooled – this is a very dangerous intersection.

As much as it has been an inconvenience to residents and a safety concern (due to a lack of emergency vehicle access) to have the bridge out of commision it has been a wonderful respite from the noise and safety hazzards associated with unrestricted traffic.
I would very much support a “No Trucks” limitation on this bridge that would also increase the lifespan of any repairs.

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