Iron Bridge work slated for October
SHELBURNE FALLS — After hearing from town officials, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation held off this summer on making Irene-related repairs to the Iron Bridge, which would have left only one lane open to alternating traffic during the village’s busy tourism season.
Instead, the estimated $200,000 repair will take place later, and will be completed by early next summer.
In 2011, Tropical Storm Irene battered the metal frame with whole tree trunks sailing through the fast-moving flood waters. Also, the Deerfield River washed over the road surface of the bridge, during the height of the flooding.
“The towns were concerned with any work being done this summer and conflicting with planned town events,” MassDOT spokesman Michael Verseckes explained. “Therefore, we instructed the contractor to hold off until now. Currently, they are close to approval for a platform system that will allow them to detail the steel areas that will be repaired.”
“Most likely, the platform will be installed in October, and fabrication of steel members will begin soon after. The completion of this contract is July 10, 2014,” Verseckes said.
‘Preservation’ project planned
The state transportation department has a larger “preservation” project planned for the Iron Bridge, beginning in late 2018 or early 2019, and costing about $1 million.
According to a project description, this future repair will include the removal and replacement of the Flexogrid wearing surface. It will include installing a new sidewalk surface and a new sidewalk approach, reconstructing the bridge approach pavements and repairing deep chips or spalls in the deck or at the deck joints. It will also include removing sand, cleaning and repairing floor beams and corroded sidewalk brackets, repairing steel elements with impact damage, replacing missing lattice, fasteners or trusses, with the milling and paving of roughly 100 feet on either side of the bridge.
You can reach Diane Broncaccio at:
or 413-772-0261, ext. 277