2017-01-03 / Front Page

Bridge construction alters traffic

By LIZ GOTTHELF
Staff Writer

KENNEBUNKPORT  With the onset of construction on the new Mathew J. Lanigan Bridge, police are advising people to note changes in traffic. 

The Mathew J. Lanigan Bridge, which crosses the Kennebunk River on Route 9, links Kennebunkport's Dock Square and Kennebunk’s Lower Village.

The current bridge was constructed in 1933 as a swing span bridge, though in present day has not been open for boat traffic, according to a press release from the town. 

The town describes the bridge as a “fine example of Yankee ingenuity, standing on the 1986 granite abutments.” However, inspections done in recent years have concluded the bridge is structurally deficient, with widespread steel corrosion in beams, and in need of rehabilitation, according to town officials.

Construction of a new, $2.7 million bridge was scheduled to begin Dec. 26 and is expected to be completed by Memorial Day, according to a statement from the Maine Department of Transportation.

The new bridge will be wider,will include six-foot sidewalks on both sides, and will have viewing outlook areas on both sides, according MDOT. 

Traffic on the bridge has been reduced to one lane of alternating traffic through March 4, and traffic signals will regulate traffic, according MDOT. A temporary pedestrian bridge will be constructed. 

The bridge will be completely closed from March 5 to mid-April, and the bridge will return to one lane of alternating traffic from mid April to completion in late May.

Construction work is weather-dependent and subject to change.

— Staff Writer Liz Gotthelf can be contacted at 282-1535, ext. 325 or egotthelf@journaltribune.com.

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