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Route 31 bridge replacement project resumes
New bridge to be built in stages to keep highway open to traffic
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that work has resumed on an $11 million project to replace the bridge carrying Route 31 (Lyell Avenue) over Route 390 in Gates. This project is the first phase of a larger initiative to improve traffic flow at the convergence of Interstate 390, Interstate 490, Route 390 and Route 31. This corridor serves as a vital link for its nearly 200,000 motorists daily to the Greater Rochester International Airport, Rochester Technology Park and the Eastman Business Park, which has been identified as a key to regional economic development advancing the Finger Lakes Forward plan.
“Our unprecedented investment in infrastructure is rebuilding communities in every corner of this state, laying the groundwork for increased growth and prosperity,” Governor Cuomo said. “This critically important project will help relieve congestion in this busy commercial corridor and ensure the Lyell Avenue Bridge’s resiliency and viability for years to come.”
The project is being completed in accordance with the requirements of Governor Cuomo’s Drivers First Initiative, which prioritizes the convenience of motorists and ensures that disruptions are kept at a minimum for drivers at highway and bridge projects across the state. Construction work to replace the bridge will be done in two stages in order to maintain traffic in both directions throughout the duration of the project.
New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Matthew J. Driscoll said, “The Lyell Avenue Bridge over Route 390 serves hundreds of thousands of commuters, delivery trucks and people running day-to-day errands, and as such the project has been carefully scheduled to maintain two-way travel and restrict expressway and ramp closures to off-peak hours.
The south side of the bridge will be removed and reconstructed beginning in April, while traffic is maintained on the north side of the bridge. This summer, traffic will shift to the new south side of the bridge as the north side is demolished and rebuilt.
Also beginning in April, the south side of the bridge will close and all traffic will use the north side of the bridge. Two travel lanes will be open in the westbound direction and one travel lane will be open in the eastbound direction between Matilda Street and Lee Road. The south side of the bridge will be dismantled during overnight hours. Entrance and exit ramps at the Lyell Avenue interchange with Route 390 will remain open with some exceptions during the demolition phase.
The expressway underneath the Lyell Avenue Bridge will be closed for four nights in the northbound direction followed by four nights in the southbound direction as concrete and steel are removed from the bridge. Ramps in the associated directions will also be temporarily closed and detours will be posted.
The replacement bridge and paved approaches between Matilda Street and Lee Road will provide a wider roadway on Lyell Avenue to facilitate the addition of bicycle lanes and sidewalks in each direction. The new bridge will also be longer to accommodate widening on the expressway below, and the traffic signal at the exit ramp from I-390 southbound will be replaced with a new signal system that includes enhanced pedestrian crossing indications.
The process to fabricate steel for the new structure has been underway since last summer. Painting and other preventive maintenance treatments on the seven bridges within the interchange are ongoing and generally will take place during the overnight hours to minimize impacts to traffic. Most will include shoulder and lane closures. A detour will be posted when a connecting ramp is fully closed.
This season, the decks of the bridges carrying I-490 eastbound and westbound over the Erie Canal, as well as the deck of the bridge carrying I-490 westbound over I-390 southbound, will be treated with a thin polymer overlay. The polymer overlay is a preventive maintenance technique that seals the bridge to improve friction and help prevent water from penetrating the concrete. Concrete pier repairs will occur on the bridge carrying I-390 northbound over I-490 eastbound.
The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.
Motorists are reminded that fines are doubled for speeding in a work zone. In accordance with the Work Zone Safety Act of 2005, convictions of two or more speeding violations in a work zone could result in the suspension of an individual’s driver’s license.
For up-to-date travel information, call 511, visit www.511NY.org, or the mobile site at m.511ny.org.