When Will The Wickford Bridge Open?

Bad news for Saxonville, once the Wickford Bridge is completed in spring 2014, the Central Street bridge will be closing and not re-opening until summer 2015.

Framingham Patch file photo
Framingham Patch file photo
On March 18, the Wickford Bridge will have been closed for a year in Framingham.

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is overseeing the $7 million bridge repair project, that has seen delay after delay.

The bridge was supposed to have re-opened in the fall of 2013, but construction of the steel bridge over the Sudbury River in Saxonville has moved into the 2014 season angering a neighborhood.

Weather permitting, the state will begin work on the bridge in March and it should re-open in April, said Framingham Engineer William Sedewitz.

He told Selectmen Tuesday night the state says it "needs 4 more weeks to finish the bridge."

"We need to stay on top" of the project, said Selectmen Chair Dennis Giombetti "And make sure 4 weeks does not turn into 8 weeks."

But bad news for Saxonville, once the Wickford Bridge is completed, the Central Street bridge will be closing.

Sedewitz said MassDOT plans to close the Central Street bridge "likely in April 2014" and it is "not scheduled to re-open until June 2015." 

"It is 14-month construction schedule," said the town engineer.

MassDOT reasons for the delay in the Wickford bridge ranged in 2013 from delays in construction of the the steel bridge beams to the asphalt plants closing in December for the season to weather issues.
-M February 26, 2014 at 06:33 AM
And I live between both bridges. It's been a joy. /s My wifes 2 block commute had been 2 miles instead freaking with water street that point. While it doesn't sound like much, add that up over a year.
laura February 26, 2014 at 07:42 AM
While the opening of Wickford will allow me to avoid a circuitous route to work, the closure of the Central Street bridge will create a much longer route to the high school for our many students in the neighborhood.
Laura Wells February 26, 2014 at 08:02 AM
I'm very unhappy that this bridge will be closed for another year. It's inconveniencing. There are many days I pass by and see little to no work activity. What's the hold up on the completion?
Mark Cain February 26, 2014 at 08:04 AM
two words, BIG DIG
Cariann Steenbruggen February 26, 2014 at 08:10 AM
Will the town consider leaving the gate between Bonita Drive & Prior Road open during the construction of the Central Street Bridge? I don't think it should be marked as the detour or alternate route, but for residents in the area or those in the know, using this as an alternate could eliminate some of the extensive travel to get around this closure.
Robert Hyzen February 26, 2014 at 09:02 AM
It took less time to construct London Bridge!!!
peter February 26, 2014 at 09:23 AM
In the real world of business transactions, when you don't deliver on time there is a penalty to be paid. In this case the supplier who did not deliver the steel on time should be required to pay a penalty, i.e. accept a reduction in they amount they are paid for this project. This should in turn result in a savings to taxpayers. If such a provision was not in the contract, Framingham needs to find a new negotiator. And in order to avoid a similar situation from developing on the Central Street bridge project, the bridge should not be closed until 1) Wickford is open and 2) all of the materials are completed to specifications and are on site, ready to go. (Obviously, you can't store asphalt on site, but if the Wickford Bridge had not been closed until the steel was on site, construction would have been completed on time and within the asphalt season.)
john February 26, 2014 at 09:24 AM
Sweet. Now the high school kids, who drive poorly and like maniacs, will be flying (no pun intended) through back roads and 'thickly settled' streets which they normally would not use. Who's running these projects anyway?? It's shameful and they should be embarrassed, although i'm sure they are not.
Kerry Dunne February 26, 2014 at 09:35 AM
I'd like the town to somehow force the Mass DOT to delay the Central St. bridge closure until they can prove that they have all necessary materials in hand and and a work schedule with employees and supervisors firmly booked for each day. I would also hope that the "Livoli gate" behind FHS can be quietly kept open.
Rick Carlson February 26, 2014 at 09:54 AM
I absolutely agree with Kerry Dunne. The town should be able to assess the complete project schedule, bill of materials, etc. before the bridge is allowed to be closed down. Even ask for their Gantt/Pert/CPM Charts, or whatever other method they're using to schedule & track progress.
Greg Schuler February 26, 2014 at 06:35 PM
Aside from the inconvenience and shameful length of the Wickford bridge project, we are all feeling it at the gas pump having to go around the river instead of over it!


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