Monday, December 10, 2012

Press Release from Rep. Ackerman - 12/10/12

Rep. Ackerman asks RIDOT to open Manville Hill Road Bridge on limited basis

STATE HOUSE – Representative Mia Ackerman (D – Dist. 45, Cumberland, Lincoln) sent a letter to Rhode Island Department of Transportation Director Michael Lewis today, requesting that he open one lane of the Manville Hill Road Bridge to automobile traffic only.

“I understand the bridge needs some immediate repairs,” she wrote. “However, I’m concerned about the traffic issues that have ensued since the Rhode Island Department of Transportation shut down the bridge. As you already know, the Manville Hill Road Bridge is a heavily traveled connecting route. I am asking you to consider leaving one lane open for automobile traffic only while we wait for reconstruction. I believe this would alleviate any traffic problems that have developed in Albion and southern Cumberland.”

After an inspection of the bridge last week, RIDOT engineers discovered its steel and bridge beams had signs of significant deterioration and required immediate repairs. Officials closed the bridge on Dec. 7 after discovering the deficiencies earlier in the day. Rehabilitation of the bridge is under design and RIDOT is slated to address additional repair work through an upcoming construction contract scheduled to begin in Summer 2013. According to the department, the 233-foot long bridge carries about 4,300 vehicles per day.
 “Currently, the bridge is the only connection between Manville and Cumberland,” she wrote. “Forcing residents to endure a detour that will take them several miles out of their way is proving to be both very confusing and frustrating to my constituents.”
            She said any motorists with additional questions should contact the RIDOT Customer Service Office at (401) 222-2450 on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.