Historic stone arch bridge to close for repairs
The oldest documented masonry bridge in Rhode Island is closing for repairs.
The state Department of Transportation says the Slatersville Stone Arch Bridge, built in 1855, will be closed from May 1 through July.
The bridge in North Smithfield carries Route 5, known as the Providence Pike, over the Branch River. The state is rehabilitating rather than replacing the bridge because it sits in the Slatersville Historic District, which was a textile mill village in the 19th century.
The bridge was declared structurally deficient a decade ago and has a 20-ton weight limit. The $13.5 million construction project will strengthen and restore the stone arches and allow the weight limit to be lifted. Another closure to finish the work is planned from March 2018 through July 2019.