Projects - East Bay

The RhodeWorks plan to repair roads and bridges was approved by the Rhode Island General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Gina M. Raimondo on February 11, 2016. The legislation (2016-H 7409Aaa, 2016 - S 2246Aaa) creates a funding source that will allow the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) to repair more than 150 structurally deficient bridges and make repairs to another 500 bridges to prevent them from becoming deficient, bringing 90 percent of the State's bridges into structural sufficiency by 2025.

Project Summary List

Silver Creek Bridge Replacement

What's Happening? RIDOT is reconstructing the Silver Creek Bridge, which carries Hope Street (Route 114) over Silver Creek in Bristol. This structurally deficient bridge was built in 1922 and is posted at 17 tons. Based on continued deterioration of the structure, RIDOT has accelerated the original timetable for replacing this bridge. In addition to the new bridge, work will include rehabilitation of existing stone walls, granite curbing, and utility relocation. The project cost is $3.8 million.

When is it Happening? The project will proceed in two main phases one year apart - utility relocation and replacement of the bridge. The current schedule includes:

  • 2019 - Beginning in early fall 2019, RIDOT will coordinate the relocation of water, sewer, gas and communication lines that all go through the bridge. Two-way traffic will always be maintained during this phase and pedestrian and bike traffic will not be affected.
  • 2020 - Utility relocation work will continue until early June 2020. The project will pause to avoid any conflicts with the Bristol Fourth of July Parade. Bridge demolition and construction will begin after Independence Day and conclude by August 31. RIDOT has included incentives in the construction contract to encourage the contractor to open the bridge sooner. During the closure, bike and pedestrian traffic will be directed to the nearby East Bay Bike Path.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will there be a detour? No lane or road closures are planned in 2019. During an eight-week period from July 5 to August 31, 2020, the bridge will be closed to all traffic. The suggested detour uses Chestnut Street, Metacom Avenue and Franklin Street. Construction on Metacom Avenue is ongoing in summer 2019 to upgrade traffic signals and three intersections and repave. It will be finished in late 2019. RIDOT will adjust traffic signal timings prior to the bridge closure to expediate traffic flow on the detour route and will carefully monitor traffic conditions once the detour is in place.

Why can't you build a bridge off-site and install it in one day? We will build major portions of the bridge off site, including the bridge deck components. However, there are a number of constraints that prohibit the type of rapid bridge replacements people have seen elsewhere in the state. These include the topography of the land, lack of access to the bridge abutments and other environmental and historic preservation concerns.

Can't you build a temporary bridge to handle traffic during construction? Building a temporary bridge would require impacting environmentally sensitive areas, removal of large trees in the area and the taking of private property. The cost of building a temporary bridge would exceed $1.4 million - about 40 percent of the total project cost. Given the cost and many adverse impacts to the area surrounding the bridge, the use of a temporary bridge is not feasible or fiscally responsible.

Is this the fastest way to replace this bridge? As mentioned above, RIDOT will use accelerated bridge construction methods to reduce the overall closure time. The bridge is designed with precast concrete beams and approach slabs which eliminates the need to build forms, install steel reinforcing bars, and pour and cure new concrete. RIDOT will build a new substructure behind the masonry walls that support the existing bridge. This avoids the need to drive sheet piling, a noisy operation which would be more impactful to the environment. These methods allow RIDOT to build the bridge as quickly as possible, at the highest quality, and with the least effect on the environment.

  • Location: Bristol
  • Start Construction: 2019
  • Finish Construction: 2021
  • Projected Total Cost: $4 Million
  • Detours Needed: Yes - Summer 2020


* All construction projects are subject to changes in schedule and scope depending on needs, circumstances, findings, and weather.