PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — This weekend, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) is planning to update the traffic patterns on the Washington Bridge, which carries I-195 westbound from East Providence to Providence, and on the interchange between I-295 North and Route 6 West. The changes, and the ensuing construction projects, are intended to minimize the impact on drivers.
About ten minutes’ travel time will be added for the Route 6 West to I-295 North connection, which will be felt at afternoon rush hours, RIDOT said Thursday. Exit 9B on I-295 Northbound will be detoured to 9C. Four large bridges carrying the highways have to be rebuilt; they’re nearly 50 years old.
On I-195 West, the bridge will be re-striped, making three thru-lanes and a lane dedicated to taking traffic entering from Route 44 (Taunton Avenue). Overnight work creating the Taunton Avenue lane will require the on-ramp to be closed briefly, and a detour will take drivers overnight to Valley Street, Warren Avenue and Broadway. The Gano Street off-ramp, Exit 3, on the Providence side of the bridge, will remain closed.
The other half of the I-195 bridge – the eastbound side – was replaced in the late 2000s. The westbound side was built in 1969, and hasn’t been rehabilitated in more than 20 years.