2017-02-02 / News

City keeps Stackpole closed

By Anthony Aloisio
Contributing Writer

SACO – Although CPM Constructors has completed the work that was required to open the bridge before the end of January, the city has nevertheless decided to keep the historic bridge closed until May.

“Due to the multiple short duration road closures that would be required throughout the remaining four months of the project completion period, and the city’s desire to improve the road approaches to the bridge from each side prior to full traffic volumes resuming, the road will remain closed to through traffic until the final completion date of May 30, 2017,” read a memo published by City Administrator Kevin Sutherland on Jan. 17.

As the Courier reported in its Nov. 17 issue, the city agreed with CPM in the fall to a formal contract extension until Jan. 27 to allow work necessary to open the bridge to one-lane traffic, with remaining work on the bridge to be done in early spring.

“They've met their contract obligation,” said Public Works Director Pat Fox. “This is more of a city decision. This isn't something the contractor requested at all. There's other work that we have to do out there.”

Fox said that the decision to keep the bridge closed was more for the sake of efficiency than necessity.

“It could be traveled on, it's just that there are going to be so many closures that to open it really wouldn't be fair to the public,” he said. “It would cause a lot of confusion, and actually if it can be closed just for long periods of time it'll help get construction done even quicker.”

Fox said that the city is taking the opportunity to also repair the road approaches on either side of the bridge, which he said has been planned for years but was on hold until the bridge repair was done.

“We're going to take advantage of the spring work window that the contractor has for the remaining work,” he said. “We're going to overlap with contractor to get our work done in the same area.”

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