|For Immediate Release
July 11, 2011
Public Information Office
|Memorial Bridge Being Closed For Necessary Repairs
Portsmouth-Kittery Bridge (US 1) To Be Closed To Northbound Traffic
The New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT) and the Maine Department of Transportation (MaineDOT) announce the closure to northbound motor vehicle traffic of the Memorial Bridge carrying US Route 1 over the Piscataqua River between Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Kittery, Maine. Southbound vehicular traffic will still be allowed while repairs are performed.
The partial bridge closure will take place at 7:00 pm today (7/11/2011). The repairs are anticipated to take approximately one week to complete and are being performed by NHDOT Bridge Maintenance crews.
The Memorial Bridge will remain open to southbound vehicular traffic (3-Ton load limit) and to bicycle and pedestrian traffic on the upstream sidewalk. Bridge lift operations will continue for marine traffic.
Based upon a detailed review of the most recent inspection of the Memorial Bridge, engineers at the NHDOT, the lead agency on this lift bridge, have determined the partial closure is necessary due to the deterioration of gusset plates located on the New Hampshire fixed truss span, on the downstream (ocean) side of the bridge. Gusset plates connect bridge beams or truss members to load-bearing columns.
Further inspections and reviews are being completed on other areas of concern on the bridge to determine whether additional repairs are needed. The results of these evaluations may affect the extent and duration of this partial bridge closure.
Signed detours will be in place on the New Hampshire side of the Piscataqua River during the partial bridge closure directing motorists to either the Sarah Long Bridge (US Route 1 Bypass) or the I-95 high level bridge.