Princess Margaret Bridge To Close June & July (abreviated content from an article originally posted by CBC NB on Feb 28/10)
Fredericton drivers are bracing for a summer of driving headaches as the New Brunswick government plans a $77-million overhaul of the Princess Margaret Bridge. The Department of Transportation is putting the capital city's drivers on notice that one of the two main bridges to cross the St. John River will be closed from June 19 to Aug. 8, forcing 20,000 vehicles a day to be reroute.
Provincial and city officials are working with the engineering firm ADI to come up with a plan to cope with traffic problems that will result from the bridge closure. Transportation Minister Denis Landry said everyone who drives in the city needs to come up with their own solution that works for them
The Princess Margaret Bridge and the Westmorland Street Bridge are the two main spans that connect Fredericton's north and south sides.
The closure of the Princess Margaret Bridge is expected to boost the amount of traffic on the Westmorland Street Bridge, which is already a rush-hour nightmare for many Fredericton drivers, by up to 50 per cent. 50,000 vehicles a day presently use that bridge.
The New Brunswick government, which employs thousands of workers on both sides of the St. John River, is considering different options that could reduce morning traffic, such as flextime for its employees.
The $77-million project, which will involve work on the bridge piers, the deck, the trusses, and the bridge bearings as well as sandblasting and painting.