Construction Update: North Washington Street Bridge Construction Look-Ahead

Overview of construction operations and impacts for the North Washington Street Bridge Replacement Project for the upcoming week.

Marine Impacts

The existing swing span steel of the existing bridge has been completely removed and the navigation channel beneath the North Washington Street Bridge is now open to all marine traffic.

The planned closure of the entire marine channel below the NWSB is currently scheduled for the first week of October. The closure will assist in installing structural steel for the new bridge deck. Once implemented, the closure will require five working days and will likely take place for one business week (Monday – Friday).

Once implemented, the closure will require five working days and will likely take place for one business week (Monday – Friday). Following the full closure there will be smaller, half channel closures to install elements of a new bridge deck throughout the month of October.

The exact timing of the full closure is still under review by the United States Coast Guard and the Massachusetts State Police Marine Unit. More information regarding the closure will be provided in the look-ahead issued following Labor Day.

Boaters should continue to exercise caution while transiting the channel and pay close attention to signage, lighting, and work vessels. As stated in the United States Coast Guard’s Local Notice to Mariners, boats transiting the bridge should monitor VHF channel 13 which allows communication and coordination with construction vessel

Slip Lane Closure

The previous planned closure of the slip lane from North Washington Street to Chelsea Street has been rescheduled to mid-September. The space that was used for the slip lane will be converted into part of the work zone. The exact timing of this operation has not yet been finalized.

The removal of this lane is part of the build conditions of the new North Washington Street Bridge, so the shutdown represents a milestone on the way to the finished project.

Nonetheless, MassDOT and its project team have kept the slip lane in place as long as possible as a way to help clear the single northbound (towards City Square) lane on the North Washington Street temporary bridge. The project team will be watching traffic operations in the next few days to ensure that vehicles keep moving as the new work zone is established.

Description of Scheduled Work

Building the piers:

Pier 1 (closest to the North End): Stripping Formwork

Pier 2: Install precast beams, post tensioning, remove cofferdam sheeting

Pier 3: Post tensioning

Pier 4: Complete

Pier 5 (closest to Charlestown): Complete

Installing, moving, and maintaining silt curtains and barges in the water

Installing temporary bent

Warehouse Pier and Column repairs

Steel erection began on 8/18

Work Hours

Most work will be done during the daytime (6:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.)

Work That Has Been Completed

Prior to 9/5

Pier 1: Final concrete placement

Pier 2: V-arm Formwork removal

Pier 3: Cofferdam sheet removal

Travel Tips

Pedestrians And Cyclists:

The westerly sidewalk, Lovejoy Wharf stairs near Converse, are open to the public. With the opening of the temporary bridge, the adjacent section of the Harborwalk passing under the bridge remains closed. Please be advised that the DCR-controlled Charlestown locks can provide another alternate route, but may close without warning and beyond control of this project. During Tudor Wharf walkway (under the bridge next to the water in Paul Revere Park) closures, pedestrian access will be provided via the Water Street underpass and guidance signage will be provided.

All users should take care to pay attention to all signage and police details and move carefully through the work zone. Police details, lane markings, temporary barriers, traffic cones, signage, and other tools will be used to control traffic and create safe work zones.

The contractor is coordinating with the TD Garden and local police to provide awareness and manage traffic impacts during events. For your awareness, during this look-ahead period, there will be no events at the TD Garden during this look ahead period.

MassDOT is also working on the Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves Rehabilitation Project, which requires significant traffic impacts including 24/7 lane reductions. For more information or to sign up for project-specific construction look-aheads like this one, visit the project website.

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