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State halfway through 1-91 construction

Construction of the Interstate 91 bridges in Deerfield began in June 2012.
Recorder/Micky Bedell

Construction of the Interstate 91 bridges in Deerfield began in June 2012. Recorder/Micky Bedell Purchase photo reprints »

DEERFIELD — As of this week, vehicles heading south on Interstate 91 in Deerfield will be running over a new temporary bridge.

The state Department of Transportation switched southbound traffic onto the new bridge this week.

The state is halfway through the $40,229,983 project that started in June 2012. It is expected to be completed on time, in the spring of 2016, with J.F. White as the contractor.

The next step is for the demolition of the existing southbound bridge, and construction of a new span, according to MassDOT spokesperson, Michael Verseckes.

Once that’s complete, southbound traffic will be switched on to the new southbound bridge, and northbound traffic will be switched on to the new northbound bridge, Verkseckes said. After that, the old northbound bridge will be demolished.

The construction is part of the state project to knock down and replace the bridges that carry the highway across the Deerfield River at Stillwater. According to the DOT, the current bridges are structurally deficient but safe.

By the project’s end, four I-91 bridges crossing the Deerfield River, Stillwater Road and Lower Road will be replaced. The bridges are the I-91 northbound bridge over the Deerfield River and Stillwater Road, the I-91 northbound bridge over Lower Road, the I-91 southbound bridge over the Deerfield River and Stillwater Road and the I-91 southbound bridge over Lower Road.

You can reach Kathleen McKiernan at: kmckiernan@recorder.com or 413-772-0261 ext. 268 On Twitter, follow @RecorderKatMcK

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