The state Department of Transportation has started work on a replacement bridge over the Mohawk River to “Niska Isle,” a community sitting on a peninsula off Rosendale Road.
The current bridge will remain open until the new bridge is completed, which is scheduled for November, said DOT spokesman Peter Van Keuren.
Work is in the initial phase, involving the relocation of a waterline, he said. Once that is complete, contractor James H. Maloy of Loudonville will start to erect a new bridge alongside the old one, he said.
The project will cost approximately $4.9 million, Van Keuren said. “We are in the beginning steps,” he said.
The state expects to close out the project next summer, Van Keuren said. The new bridge will be similar to the one it will replace, which was built in 1916. It will be a one-lane multigirder steel bridge running about 588 feet long.
The state is replacing the bridge because it is in poor shape, Van Keuren said. It has a safety score of 2.522. The top possible score is 7; any bridge with a rating lower than 5 is considered “deficient” by the state Department of Transportation.
Niska Isle is home to several families, some of whom have lived there for generations. The bridge is their only way across the small bay off the Mohawk River It is among at least four state-owned bridges in the greater Capital Region serving fewer than two dozen homes. Those three other bridges have had more than $1 million worth of work done on them in recent years.
The four bridges were built as part of the old state canal system, and all four came to be owned eventually by the state Department of Transportation.
A wooden bridge, built in 1902, served the community until it was swept away by an ice jam. The girder bridge replaced it.