CLIFTON PARK — Work on the new bridge carrying Sitterly Road above a portion of the Northway is scheduled to be finished by the end of 2022, state transportation officials said Wednesday.
The previous bridge was heavily damaged in an April crash. A temporary bridge was installed in early May.
The new bridge will stand more than 16-feet, 7-inches, exceeding the previous bridge’s clearance by over a foot-and-a-half, and it will include a 5-foot sidewalk on the north side of the bridge, transportation officials said.
The sidewalk was incorporated based on input from the local community, state Department of Transportation spokesman Bryan Viggiani said. The old bridge didn’t have a sidewalk.
Preliminary survey work, tree-cutting and relocation of utilities has started and will continue until the spring, at which point construction will start, Viggiani said.
The project carrying Sitterly Road above Interstate 87 just south of Exit 9 is expected to be finished by the end of next year, state transportation officials said.
The new $6.5 million bridge will also feature a pair of 11-foot travel lanes with 6-foot shoulders on either side, and a closed-circuit television camera will be installed to enhance safety during emergency situations to assist in identifying and clearing disruptions on I-87.
In the spring, construction will begin with excavation and concrete work in preparation for removal of the old bridge.
The bridge will be closed to traffic during the bulk of construction, which has been scheduled to occur from late June to early September, a summer timeline aimed at accommodating local school bus routes, Viggiani said.
The summer detour will use Clifton Park Center Road, Clifton Country Road, Route 146, Route 9 and Crossing Boulevard. Minor finishing work will continue as the project stretches into the end of 2022.
When completed, the new bridge will restore an important travel link for residents and commuters that suffered extensive damage on April 14, when it was struck by an illegally-sized commercial vehicle traveling southbound on the Adirondack Northway, DOT Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said.
Sitterly Road connects Clifton Park with the town of Halfmoon and is a popular route for motorists headed to area schools and retail centers.
“The Department of Transportation understands the importance of the Sitterly Road Bridge to the Clifton Park community and has worked hard to keep this key route open for travelers while, at the same time, expediting a permanent fix,” Dominguez said. “The new Sitterly Road Bridge will provide motorists with a higher, modern and more resilient span that will enhance safety and ease travel for motorists traveling between Clifton Park and Halfmoon, as well as those on the Adirondack Northway.”
A boom lift being towed on a trailer behind a truck smashed into the overpass, damaging it beyond repair.
Its closure caused traffic congestion in Clifton Park and Halfmoon, prompting adjustment of normal driving patterns and school bus routes.
After the crash, the Department of Transportation installed temporary support structures and removed the damaged portion of the bridge.
In May, a temporary span was installed to provide continued travel access while plans for the permanent structure were developed. The bridge was closed for three weeks to motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.
The DOT said it assembled a multi-disciplined team of state engineers to streamline and accelerate the design process. The replacement bridge was designed in less than five months in comparison to the normal duration of 12 to 18 months, state officials said.
Clifton Park Town Supervisor Philip Barrett said the town will continue to support the efforts of the DOT during the construction process and it endorsed the new bridge design that included the requested pedestrian access enhancements.
Contact reporter Brian Lee at [email protected] or 518-419-9766.