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New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge, March 2014MassDOT will hold a public informational meeting on the New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Corridor Study as follows:

Thursday, May 7th, 6:00p.m to 8:00 p.m, Waypoint Event Center, 185 MacArthur Drive, New Bedford

The focus of the study is to evaluate and address multimodal transportation issues along Route 6 between County Street in the City of New Bedford and Adams Street in the Town of Fairhaven, including the potential replacement of the New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge. At this meeting, the study team will present its analysis of bridge design alternatives and will solicit input from the public before drafting final recommendations.

MassDOT encourages the public to participate in the discussion about a new bridge and has set up a survey to receive public opinion. www.surveymonkey.com/s/newbedfordbridgesurvey

The existing New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge is a system of three bridges that connect the mainland across two mid-harbor islands (Fish Island and Pope’s Island). Erected between 1896 and 1903, the central swing span is scheduled to open thirteen times a day to allow boats to pass through into the northern harbor area often resulting in 20-minute delays for vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians traveling along Route 6 between New Bedford and Fairhaven. The swing span suffers from long-term deterioration despite extensive maintenance repairs over the years.

The swing span bridge is a constraint for marine traffic, and according to the 2010 New Bedford-Fairhaven Municipal Harbor Plan, the future development of harbor activities north of Route 6 envisions expanded commercial use but is limited by the bridge. The study is examining how changes to the bridge may support the current and future maritime needs of the harbor and enhance economic development opportunities in the port area.

The meeting location is accessible to people with disabilities. To request language interpretation assistance, American Sign Language interpreters, assistive listening devices, handouts in alternative formats, or information on the meeting, please contact: Jill Barrett by email jbarrett@fhiplan.com or by phone (860) 570-0740 by April 30, 2015. Portuguese and Spanish language interpretation services will be provided at the meeting.

For more information, visit the study website: www.mass.gov/massdot/newbedfordstudy/

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