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Route 2, Florida, December 13, 2011MassDOT Secretary and CEO Richard A. Davey announced today the six-mile section of Route 2 closed following Tropical Storm Irene has reopened to traffic.

The portion of Route 2 connecting North Adams, Florida, Savoy, and Charlemont in northern Berkshire and Franklin counties was closed following the significant damage caused by Irene in late August.

“With the hard work of our District One staff and our contractors, we were able to design, engineer, survey, and begin construction in record time,” said Secretary Davey. “Recognizing this is an important connection in this area for residents and for tourism, Governor Patrick made this a priority and today I am happy to say we delivered.”

Using an expedited bidding process and unprecedent turnaround time, MassDOT was able to advertise contracts and begin the work in just over one month after the storm hit.

“A job of this magnitude would have ordinarily taken at least one entire construction season, if not more, to complete. But with a critical artery like Route 2, we were innovative in our bidding process and able to move aggressively on design and construction,” said Highway Administrator Frank DePaola.

Contractors Northern Construction, ET&L Corporation, JH Maxymillian, and R. Bates & Sons worked around the clock to rebuild major slopes, reconstruct large swaths of the road that were lost, upgrade  drainage, build new retaining walls, and reinforce slopes that protect the bridge connecting Savoy and Florida.

Berkshire County area roads and bridges suffered $35 million in damage, with $23 million for the cost of reconstructing the 6 miles of Route 2.

In early September, the Obama Administration issued a major disaster declaration making Massachusetts eligible for federal disaster aid to assist with the cost of work on Route 2.  Upcoming completion work along Route 2 will rebuild retaining walls, with no traffic impacts.

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