The replacement of Waterville's ageing Ticonic Bridge has been a topic of conversation for the last few years.

Work on the $52.8 million replacement bridge was started in March of 2023.

From the very beginning of the project, we knew that there would often be times when traffic was limited to one lane.  We were also told that, during some portions of the construction project, the bridge would need to be completely closed.

It looks like we are going to be dealing with some complete closures of the bridge over the next few weeks.  Fortunately, all of these closures will take place at night.

According to an article in the KJ, these periods of complete closure of the bridge will take place during the evenings and overnights for several weeks.  They are scheduled to happen from Monday, December 11, through Thursday, December 14.  Additionally, the bridge will be closed from Sunday, December 17, through Thursday, December 21.  On these nights, the bridge will be closed from 7 PM to 6 AM.

During the times when the bridge is closed, detour signs will direct both vehicles and pedestrians to an alternate route.

The Ticonic Bridge, which crosses the Kennebec River, was built in 1909.  Initially, its purpose was to allow for a trolley connecting Waterville and Winslow.  Later, a sidewalk was added so that pedestrian had an alternative to the Two Cent Bridge.  As cars became more popular in Central Maine, the bridge was modified to allow for motor vehicles.  While the bridge has served the community well for over a century, it is clear that a replacement was needed.

The Maine DOT website explains that the new bridge will have:

wider eastbound lanes, shoulders, sidewalks and bike lanes. Traffic will avoid the 7.8-mile round trip detour and related congestion caused if the current bridge fails. Eliminating the possibility of reroutes following completion of a new bridge will have obvious public benefits such as improved emergency response times

The new bridge is expected to be completed in April of 2025.

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