FAIRFIELD — Motorists traveling on Interstate 95 in Benton and Fairfield should plan for a longer commute.

Segments of the highway there have been reduced to one lane as crossover lanes are being built in advance of a bridge rehabilitation project that will last about two years.

When the crossover lanes are compete around early November, Technical Construction Inc. of Turner will undertake a $9.3 million repair project on the Clinton A. Clauson Bridge that carries I-95 over the Kennebec River and the nearby bridge that spans the Pan Am Railways.

The southbound bridge is 1,028 feet in length, the northbound bridge is 938 feet long and the Pan Am Railways span is 128 feet long.

Both directions of travel will initially be diverted onto the southbound bridges while crews work on the northbound ones, according to Mark Latti, Maine Department of Transportation public information officer.

After work is completed on the northbound bridges next fall, traffic will be diverted to it and work will begin on the other bridges.

The rehabilitation projects, include removing the concrete bridge decks, repairing deteriorating structural steel and concrete, installing a new bridge deck and waterproof membrane, replacing existing curb and rail, and paving, Latti said.

The Clinton A. Clauson Bridge and Pan Am Railways Bridge were built in 1964 and renovated in 1987, said Latti. They were last inspected in 2010.

Results of the inspections revealed no safety problems, said Latti. Without repairs, however, more potholes would develop and more water could seep through the decking, he said.

In the work zone, the speed limit will be lowered to 50 mph and fines will be doubled.

During the 24-month project, Latti said motorists who generally access I-95 at the 133 on-ramp will be rerouted to exit 132 via routes 139 and 201.

Throughout the undertaking, motorists will be able use the off-ramp at exit 133 in Fairfield.

Beth Staples — 861-9252

[email protected]

 


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