Chicago contractor may replace Memorial Bridge

Posted Oct. 13, 2011, at 8:06 p.m.

CONCORD, N.H. — New Hampshire transportation officials say a Chicago contractor is their top choice to remove and replace the Memorial Bridge between Portsmouth and Kittery.

Archer Western Contractors of Chicago priced the project at $81.4 million and say they can have the new bridge open by June 2013.

Transportation officials, who opened three bids Thursday, were projecting the bridge would not open until 2014.

The bids were evaluated based on design concepts, price and construction schedules. The bids include removal of the 88-year-old bridge.

Maine and New Hampshire will split the cost of replacing the bridge that spans the Piscataqua River — which has long been a vital link between the two states.

Motorists meanwhile can use two other bridges — the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge and the I-95 bridge.