PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Commuters Monday morning likely noticed a new lane pattern on I-95 North as the R.I. Department of Transportation (RIDOT) begins to shift traffic onto its newly constructed bridge in Providence.
The change went into effect late Friday night into Saturday morning. The far left lane now splits off onto the new bridge at Exit 37 (the old Exit 22) while the other three lanes remain on the old bridge.
Anyone who’s passing through Providence can stay in their lane, but those needing to take the Route 146/state offices exit should make sure to be right of the split.
To prevent crashes from happening, RIDOT warned drivers not to slam on their brakes or make a sudden lane change. If you miss your exit, continue northbound and take the Branch Avenue exit instead.
All of the travel lanes will gradually be moved onto the new bridge from the old bridge, which will be demolished upon completion. At that point, RIDOT will reconfigure the ramps to address the issues with merging onto and exiting the highway in that congested area.
“We’ll be demolishing over the next two years the existing bridge and many of the ramps that feed into it from Atwells Avenue, from downtown Providence, and we will be reconfiguring those so that when we’re done a lot of the crossovers and the accidents and safety concerns that exist now along that stretch will be eliminated,” RIDOT Director Peter Alviti explained.
The entire project is expected to be completed in 2025.