Reed, RIDOT announce $50M grant for bridge improvements, repairs

West Bay

CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — U.S. Sen. Jack Reed and Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) Director Peter Alviti announced on Monday the federal government will invest an additional $50 million to improve and repair the state’s bridges.

The grant will be used to rehabilitate six bridges in Providence and Cranston, four of which have been deemed structurally deficient.

“We’ve been bringing the money in and that translates not to just good roads, but very importantly, to good jobs,” Reed said.

Rhode Island ranks last in the nation in overall bridge condition, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

“These funds will help accelerate us to the point of getting us from the worst state to probably the best state in a shorter amount of time,” Alviti said.

A 2019 bridge report by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association showed more than 22% of the state’s bridges are structurally deficient.

“What these funds mean – not only do these projects move up, but all the dozens of projects in front of them also move up,” Alviti added. “We’ll get to be structurally sufficient a lot sooner.”

The bridge carrying Route 10 over Elmwood Avenue will be addressed along with the Huntington Viaduct Bridge that carries Route 10 over I-95 and two nearby ramp bridges.

Alviti said the grant money accelerates work by nearly four years.

According to RIDOT, design work is expected to get underway in 2020 and 2021 with construction beginning in spring 2022 and concluding at the end of 2024.

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