KITTERY — With the Memorial Day weekend approaching, the “Maine Ahead: Building a Better Gateway” project is planning to change the schedule of the ongoing safety work happening on the Piscataqua River (I-95) Bridge.
Beginning at 2 p.m. Thursday, May 21, all three lanes of travel will be open on each side of the bridge. These six lanes will remain open through the holiday weekend. Lane restrictions will not happen again before 5:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 26. Heading into the following weekend, all three northbound lanes will reopen at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 28, and all three southbound lanes will reopen at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 29.
Lane restrictions may happen during the week, but all six travel lanes on the bridge will be open every weekend through June 16. After June 16, lane restrictions will only happen overnight for the rest of the summer.
Please be attentive and drive carefully near our construction areas. Lanes are narrower, and our crews are working close to traffic. We continue to appreciate the patience and understanding of the members of the traveling public as we work on these important safety improvements. For the latest information, visit buildingabettergateway.com, and follow @MaineAheadNews on Facebook and Twitter.
The “Maine Ahead: Building a Better Gateway” project is a collaboration involving the Maine Department of Transportation, the Maine Turnpike Authority and the New Hampshire Department of Transportation. The goal of the project is to revitalize and rehabilitate the travel corridor that welcomes millions of commuters, travelers, and freight drivers to Maine every year. The initiative focuses on two major construction projects on the I-95 corridor: the Piscataqua River Bridge and the York Toll Plaza. The toll plaza work involves safety improvements and the ability to allow highway-speed tolling. The bridge work will extend the life of the bridge, add needed safety improvements, and prepare the structure for potential breakdown-lane travel during peak travel periods.
In 2018, 37 million tourists visited Maine a 33% increase from 2012 tourism numbers. During normal times, 78,000 vehicles cross the Piscataqua River Bridge every day, and in the summer, that daily traffic number can climb to 130,000 vehicles. More than 15 million transactions occur at the York Toll Plaza each year. In 2019, on Labor Day weekend alone, nearly 250,000 transactions occurred at the York Toll Plaza, with 187,000 being captured electronically.