MassDOT plans replacement of two Montague bridges

  • The “White Bridge” carries Turners Falls Road from Greenfield over the Connecticut River into Turners Falls. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

  • The Fifth Street “Green Bridge” over the power canal in Turners Falls. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

  • The “White Bridge” carries Turners Falls Road from Greenfield over the Connecticut River into Turners Falls. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

Staff Writer
Published: 1/18/2022 3:17:25 PM
Modified: 1/18/2022 3:16:20 PM

MONTAGUE — The state Department of Transportation (MassDOT) recently announced its plans to replace the “White Bridge” via Turners Falls Road over the Connecticut River and the Fifth Street “Green Bridge” over the upper canal.

Town Administrator Steve Ellis shared limited available details during a Selectboard meeting last week, with Selectboard Chair Rich Kuklewicz having received a letter from MassDOT in December.

Ellis said he anticipates completion of the project, which will cost around $45 million and rely on federal funding, will “likely be several years out.” Ellis said he may engage in a conversation with MassDOT at a transportation planning meeting on Jan. 25 to learn further details.

“I don’t know that this changes anything in our plans, but I wanted to bring it to the board’s attention,” Ellis said of MassDOT’s announcement. “It is potentially a very exciting project.”

“I think it’s multiple years out, but it’s long overdue, actually,” Kuklewicz said.

Historical Commission member Ed Gregory said the predecessor of the “White Bridge” was a suspension bridge built in 1872. After being destroyed by flooding in 1936, Gregory said the town installed what was intended to be a temporary bridge in 1937. This bridge is the “White Bridge” used today.

The predecessor of the Fifth Street bridge, Gregory said, was constructed in 1926. It was then replaced in 1954 with the “Green Bridge” used today. Ellis said the town had advocated to replace the Fifth Street bridge shortly after repairs were completed in 2019.

Reach Julian Mendoza at 413-772-0261, ext. 261 or jmendoza@recorder.com.


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