Starting today, an eight million dollar construction project on the Pell Bridge in Newport will cause significant delays in everyday traffic. According to the RIBTA, the construction will focus on resurfacing the road, along with other bridge repairs. During this time, traffic on the bridge will be limited to a single lane for each direction. All lanes are expected to be open by the end of June.
“I can’t stress enough the structure is safe,” said RITBA Executive Director Buddy Croft. “However, the bridge was built in 1969 and it’s time for the road surface to be repaired.” In the meantime, this is going to be a total nightmare for commuters. RITBA Director of Engineering Eric Offenberg is suggesting drivers using the bridge should give themselves an extra fifteen minutes to get to their destination.
Long story short, if you value your time, avoid using the Pell Bridge at all cost for the next two months. I’m not sure why we have to do this just as Newport tourism and beach season is about to take off, but we have no other choice but to suffer through the delays.
PS – Just a thought, but can’t we at least shut off the bridge fares as all this is going down? It’s one thing to make people pay $4 to use the bridge. Now you’re gonna make people pay to sit in traffic? Not to mention, it would also help traffic move along a bit faster, but what do I know?