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Rhode Island DOT Celebrates Completion of Kingston Road Bridge in Richmond

RICHMOND, RI — Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) Director Peter Alviti Jr. recently joined state and local leaders for a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the $21.3-million Kingston Road Bridge project in Richmond. The project finished on budget and five months ahead of schedule.

RIDOT completely replaced this 70-year-old bridge, which carries I-95 over Route 138 at the Exit 3 interchange. The project also included changes to reduce the frequency and severity of crashes and consolidated the two exits in each direction into a single exit. RIDOT removed two sharply curved highway off-ramps as well as the tight weave for traffic on the highway with ramps spaced too closely together — a configuration dating back to the 1950s that would not meet today's design and safety standards.

In the five years prior to the start of construction in 2019, there were 148 crashes at the interchange including one fatality and 28 involving injuries. A review of crash data found that 52 crashes involved rear-end collisions, 27 in which a driver lost control of the vehicle and four in which a vehicle rolled over. RIDOT expects the alignment and geometry of the new ramps will reduce the number of crashes and make the interchange safer.

"At RIDOT we follow a data-driven approach when it comes to rebuilding our roads and bridges and the data in this case was very clear — we had a serious safety problem at this interchange," Alviti said. "It made perfect sense to both reconstruct the bridge and address the safety concerns in one single project."

RIDOT also removed a guardrail barrier along Route 138 at the bridge and installed new traffic signals with pedestrian crossing features. The department also added 1,500 feet of new sidewalk, making it easier and safer for pedestrians to walk along Route 138 and access the RIPTA transit stop just east of the bridge.

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The project included drainage improvements to properly handle and treat stormwater runoff while reducing the possibility of localized flooding during severe storms. These included two stormwater infiltration basins and two water quality swales located on either side of the bridge. This will allow a reduction in sediment and pollutants, mitigating the impacts of the roadway on nearby Canob Pond.

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