2012-01-06 / Front Page

State adjusts Woolwich bridge fix plan

BY BETH BROGAN, Times Record Staff


A CAR travels over the Dana Mill Bridge to cross Nequasset Stream in Woolwich on Monday. 
TROY R. BENNETT / THE TIMES RECORD A CAR travels over the Dana Mill Bridge to cross Nequasset Stream in Woolwich on Monday. TROY R. BENNETT / THE TIMES RECORD WOOLWICH — Input from Woolwich residents at a December meeting prompted state officials to reconsider a proposal to remove the Dana Mill Bridge that carries Dana Mill Road over Nequasset Brook.

State transportation officials now plan to replace or repair culverts there, likely later this year.

The Maine Department of Transportation proposed removing the bridge and dead-ending Dana Mill Road because it would potentially have saved the state money, project manager Mark Parlin said Thursday.

Two 15- foot- diameter culverts that make up the bridge spanning Nequasset Brook are severely rusted at the bottom and have “begun to unzip,” Parlin said.

The bridge is not dangerous, he said, but, “There’s a complete section loss of the steel that’s not attached to the upper part in places.”

But at a Dec. 13 meeting in Woolwich, about 25 residents of Dana Mill Road, Trott Road and Jakes Run told Parlin they opposed closing the bridge, Town Administrator Lynette Eastman said.

They said that if the bridge were removed, they’d have to travel “several miles” to travel to the nearest town center, in Dresden, according to Eastman, “All the way out the Dana Mill Road to Old Stage Road, then to Middle Road, then back up Middle Road.”

“It’s hard to tell sometimes,” Parlin said. “Sometimes people would prefer to live on a dead-end road, so we would have been remiss not to throw that out there. But most of the people at the meeting were not in favor of that.”

As a result, Parlin’s team will begin to draft a preliminary design report for the bridge work. He hopes to present a proposal for the rehabilitation or replacement of the bridge some time in late spring or early summer.

When the work would commence depends on the proposal, he said.

The 2012- 13 MDOT fiscal year work plan includes $ 600,000 budgeted for the entire project, including engineering. Parlin said construction is pegged at approximately $445,000.

The Dana Mill Bridge has been under the jurisdiction of the state since a 1991 law change, Parlin said.

bbrogan@timesrecord.com

 

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