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Marpe: State Begins Study Of Saugatuck River Bridge Repairs

Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe
Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe Photo Credit: Provided

WESTPORT, Conn. -- The Connecticut Department of Transportation has initiated a “Rehabilitation Study Report” about the century-old Saugatuck River Bridge,Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe recently announced.

The structure is also known as the Bridge Street Bridge and is officially known as the Cribari Bridge.

The state-owned bridge, which is more than 100 years old, is high on the state’s list of deficient bridges in need of rehabilitation.

Preliminary findings by the state show structural deficiencies, traffic problems and a high number of accidents. Some of these findings are shown in the attached PowerPoint presentation document.

From 1989-91, rehabilitation to some elements of the bridge were performed, but it is in need of major work once again, according to Marpe.

Marpe has told state officials the bridge played a large role in the history of the Saugatuck community, including serving as a source of traditional holiday decorations for the entire area thanks to the efforts of Al's Angels.

“As I informed a number of the town’s elected officials last week, the safety of the bridge and the people who use it, as well as the related impact of bridge traffic on the safety of Westport neighborhoods are my primary concerns," Marpe said in a press release.

"At the same time, I am very sensitive to the historic aspects of this iconic bridge and its significance to many Westporters. I am satisfied that the state understands and is seriously taking these concerns into consideration."

The state's study will take about six months and will be performed by a bridge consultant. When it is complete, the report will detail the conditions, problems, issues, severity, costs and potential options for rehabilitation.

There then will be public hearings and presentations, as well as opportunity for public review and comment.

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