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May 15. 2013 12:13PM

Final span float-in for Memorial Bridge scheduled in June

PORTSMOUTH — The final float-in for the  Memorial Bridge project will take place between June 10 and June 15.

The Piscataqua River in the area of the bridge will be closed to marine traffic during that time as the center lift span of the bridge is floated down river from the state pier, set in place and tested.


Crews will be working 24 hours a day for the duration of the five-day channel closure on a variety of tasks that will lead to completion of the bridge, Steve DelGrosso, project manager for Archer Western Contractors, said in a statement issued Wednesday.


Temporary jacking towers on the barge Cape Cod need to be dismantled so that the barge can be removed from the channel, and there are 64 counterweight wire rope connections in a tight configuration that need to be made up and adjusted.


"The machine rooms under the ends of the center span are complex, and completing the electrical connections to the towers will be time consuming," DelGrosso said.


Once all connections are made, final adjustments need to be completed to more closely balance the counterweights with the span, he said.


Archer Western will be making every effort to complete the installation and lifting of the center span in as little time as possible, he added, but he anticipates needing the full five days.


The center span is the last of the three spans to be set in place. The new Memorial Bridge is scheduled to open to traffic sometime in July.


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