Demolition of the Old Jamestown Bridge

North Kingstown and Jamestown, RI
Owner: Rhode Island Department of Transportation

The Old Jamestown Bridge spanned the 1 1/3-mile width of the West Passage of Narragansett Bay between North Kingstown and Jamestown, Rhode Island, for over 50 years. The old bridge consisted of a cantilever truss main span; six deck truss spans; twenty-three girder spans; and thirty-seven trestle approach spans. In 1992, the old bridge was replaced by a modern prestressed concrete deck-type structure named the Jamestown-Verrazano Bridge.

Demolition of the old bridge commenced during the early spring of 2006. Demolition operations were carried out in accordance with a comprehensive set of documents prepared by GRA. Included in this set were the original 1939 plans of the old bridge; hydrographic surveys of the bay bottom; previously-prepared above- and below-water inspection reports; new contract plans and specifications outlining safety requirements; blasting restrictions; limits of removal; traffic management plans for the closure of the Jamestown-Verrazano Bridge during explosive events; procedures for environmental monitoring and compliance; and placement of electronic message boards at critical locations on the State's roadways warning motorists of delays during explosive events.

A special feature of the demolition documents was the designation of three off-shore sites for the construction of artificial fishery reefs. The reefs were constructed by depositing concrete debris of bridge decks and foundations at the designated sites.