NEW SWEDEN, Maine — The Maine Department of Transportation is anticipating that motorists will experience a minor inconvenience during a significant project that will replace a failing culvert bridge over Bearsley Brook on Route 161 in New Sweden.
The project will begin Monday, July 27.
Department of Transportation officials said Thursday that part of Route 161 will be closed for 10 days as crews remove the single multiplate arch culvert bridge and replace it with a double multiplate arch culvert bridge. Crews also plan to replace the guardrail along the culvert area and repave the area surrounding the culvert.
“This project was delayed by the weather,” Mark Latti, DOT spokesman, said Thursday. “We had hoped to do it earlier this summer, but the weather did not cooperate. We were unable to do it because of the rain and the high stream flows.”
Freeport-based CPM Constructors is the contractor for the $375,000 project.
During the construction period, Latti said, there will be a detour that uses U.S. Route 1, the Stockholm Road, School Street, Main Street and Lake Street in order to bypass the construction area.
The detour route will be well-marked with signs. Road-closed signs will be posted starting 10 miles south and five miles north of the project on Route 161
Latti said the 10-day project should not cause traffic congestion, but motorists will be inconvenienced by the detour.
“It is a rather long detour that uses a variety of roads,” he acknowledged. “We anticipate that the project will take 10 days, but if it goes quicker, we will open up the road quicker.”
Crews started posting signs July 1. All signs will remain covered until the project begins.