Moving Equipment Requires Two Northbound Lanes of I-495 and Ramp to Close Overnight

Old 495 northbound bridge being dismantled as traffic flows on three lanes of new bridge. (Courtesy photograph.)

Equipment moving from one side to the other of the partially completed northbound I-495 bridge in Haverhill means a ramp and two right lanes will close overnight tonight.

The closure at the $102 million construction site curtails two travel lanes, between exits 48 and 49, and closes the exit 49 off-ramp. State transportation officials said a single right lane will be closed beginning at 9 p.m., followed by the closure of the second right lane and off-ramp at 10. Both right lanes and the off-ramp will re-open at 5, tomorrow morning.

During the northbound off-ramp closure at exit 49, drivers will be detoured to exit 50—Route 97 and Broadway. Motorists are asked to bear right at the fork on the ramp and turn left onto Route 97 West/Broadway at the top of the ramp, cross over I-495 and take the on-ramp to I-495 south.

Three lanes of a new northbound bridge have been completed and are carrying traffic. The new bridges are designed to last 75 years as opposed to the existing bridges built less than 60 years ago. Officials say the goals are to eliminate “constant emergency repair work,” improve roadway safety with full-width breakdown lanes and provide a dedicated exit lane on the northbound bridge for exit 49, near Westgate Center.

The old, twin bridges are 712 feet long with four piers per bridge in the Merrimack River. The new bridges use two piers each. The federal government is paying 80% of the project cost with the state pay the remaining 20%.

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