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Motorists, Use Detours As Westport Bridge Gets $2.85 Million Overhaul

The northern approach to the North Avenue bridge shows the Road Closed To Thru Traffic sign.
The northern approach to the North Avenue bridge shows the Road Closed To Thru Traffic sign. Photo Credit: Jay Polansky

WESTPORT, Conn. — A historic Merritt Parkway overpass in Westport is getting a nearly $3 million makeover.

As a result, the North Avenue bridge over the Merritt was closed to traffic Monday for a full rehabilitation. It is expected to reopen by Aug. 27, according to the Connecticut Department of Transportation.

Standing near the northern approach to the bridge Monday, Westport Police Special Officer David Kassay confirmed that motorists looking to cross the Merritt were turning around at the barriers blocking the road.

But “the detour is well marked,” he said, and many motorists are following the alternate route.

Kassay said the timing of the closure — just after Westport schools closed for the summer — helped to lessen disruption. Coleytown Elementary School is less than a mile north of the construction site, and Bedford Middle School and Staples High School are just south of the site.

DOT advises motorists heading north on North Avenue to take Cross Highway to Weston Road to Easton Road to avoid the closed bridge.

Those heading south should follow Easton Road to Weston Road to Cross Highway.

The project consists of the full rehabilitation of the existing bridge structure. Construction crews will remove the western spandrel, patch the underside and overside of the bridge, and replace the deck. A spandrel is the space between two arches.

The project, which is scheduled to be completed by Oct. 30, has a total price tag of $2,854,817.14. Blakeslee Arpaia Chapman Inc. of Branford was awarded the contract for the project.

The existing bridge was constructed in 1939.

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