Next phase
Workers are seen last month on the Vernon Street/Route 142 side of the Brattleboro-Hinsdale bridge project.

Next phase

Work begins on the Vermont side of the Brattleboro-Hinsdale bridge project

BRATTLEBORO — After a noisy summer and fall of banging and clanging noises along the Connecticut River, the $61.2 million Brattleboro-Hinsdale bridge project has begun the next phase of work.

As work on the new bridge continues to progress from Route 119 on the New Hampshire shoreline in Hinsdale, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT) says that bridge work has begun on Vernon Street (Route 142) in Brattleboro.

According to a recent NHDOT news release, bridge crews from Reed & Reed, Inc. of Woolwich, Maine have recently started the construction of the Vermont bridge components.

“Individuals who travel Vernon Street/VT Route 142 should expect to see an increase in construction activities, but impact to the traveling public should continue to be minimal throughout the fall, winter, and early spring as the work being done during this phase of the project will not be in full-time conflict with roadway travel,” the NHDOT said.

“Motorists can expect intermittent delays with trucks carrying material and equipment into and out of the construction area. Temporary construction signage along with flag persons or uniformed officers will be utilized on days when longer delays are anticipated.”

According to Reed & Reed's website, “substructure work is well underway” for six of the seven piers.

That work involves cofferdams - temporary dams that create a dry work environment for bridge builders - and work with pipe piles - steel pipes which are used in deep foundations and driven deep into the ground to add structural stability. They are filled with concrete.

Other work includes excavation, concrete seal placement, and cleaning.

Reed & Reed said they began their work on the Hinsdale side where Pier 7 and the New Hampshire abutment are located. The other piers are being built in descending order to the Vermont side of the river, where Pier 2 is the last river pier and Pier 1 is on land.

NHDOT personnel say that during the project, construction crews will realign a section of Route 119 in Hinsdale to completely bypass the two existing bridges.

The reconstruction of Route 119 will begin approximately 600 feet south of Georges Field Road and extend north and west along the new alignment for 0.6 mile, where it will connect to Route 142 in Brattleboro, with a new intersection that will be approximately 900 feet south of the existing intersection of routes 5, 119, and 142 - the infamous Malfunction Junction.

The reconstruction of approximately 1,700 feet of Route 142 will occur during the 2023 construction season under a planned 90-day road closure and signed detour. A new boat ramp in New Hampshire will be completed during this project as well.

If all goes well, the new bridge will be open to traffic by October 2023, with the completion date for the remainder of the project set for October 2024.

Since jurisdiction over the Connecticut River belongs to New Hampshire, it is responsible for 11% of the cost of the bridge project, with Vermont kicking in about 2%. The remaining 86% will be covered by the federal government.

Subscribe to the newsletter for weekly updates