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Cranston’s ongoing bridge inspection identifies first bridge needing immediate repair

Mayor Ken Hopkins, on Sunday, announced that the City of Cranston will be taking prompt action on one local Cranston bridge that has been part of a structural review organized by his administration.

“In January, I announced that we would be undertaking inspections and evaluations of Cranston’s owned fourteen bridges and culverts as part of our watchdog responsibilities of the city infrastructure,” Hopkins said.

He explained that inspectors from Pare Corporation have identified some deficiencies in one bridge that calls for some immediate attention.

“As a result of their findings, the Kimberly Lane bridge crossing over the Furnace Hill Brook needs some repair work,”  Hopkins said.

The bridge serves as the main entrance for hundreds of houses in the Hillside Farms subdivision off Phenix Avenue.

“In 2023, inspectors from the Rhode Island Department of Transportation had inspected the bridge and found its condition acceptable, that did not warrant any immediate load bearing restrictions,” the mayor said. “The Pare inspectors found significant deterioration under the bridge, likely caused from recent extensive flooding that overrode the riverbanks and flooded the Phenix Avenue area at the plat entrance.”

Hopkins continued, saying, “the volume of water and recent floodings are believed to have caused damage to loosen concrete and material that calls for immediate attention underneath the roadway.”

The mayor said he sent a letter to neighborhood residents alerting them of the planned repair work that will commence in the next few days. He advised them “we are going to be initiating repairs on the bridge to address the concerns in the short term, while Pare officials develop a long-term plan for the bridge.”

The mayor said that local Cranston highway division workers will manage the initial temporary repair work. The plan will involve installing some steel plates to reinforce the under road and place new pavement over the brook. To minimize inconvenience to residents and the motoring public, Hopkins said the workers will try and work on one side of the bridge at a time to avoid closing the bridge down.

Mayor Hopkins asked “that drivers be aware of the work and observe planned traffic control devices and our police department when entering and leaving the plat.”

“Our determination to undertake these inspections for the first time in decades will protect the public and preserve these bridge assets for many years to come,” he said.

Pare inspectors are finishing the inspection and assessment stage of the seven (7) city-owned bridges and seven (7) culverts in Cranston.

“Any conditions that warrant attention will be addressed promptly,” Hopkins concluded.

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