Burns Bridge Traffic Shift begins TOMORROW

From the Burns Bridge Project website — if you travel on the Route 9 bridge between Worcester and Shrewsbury, consider signing up for alerts!

Update: 8:30pm — I recommend T&G Graphics’ image of the changes described below.

Beginning on January 14, 2014 traffic will be shifted from the existing Kenneth F. Burns Memorial Bridge and onto the first half of the new replacement bridge. This traffic shift is dependent on dry weather conditions in order for the pavement to be restriped, therefore may be postponed in the event of precipitation.   

The relocation of traffic will be accomplished in two stages. The first stage will shift only the two eastbound lanes onto the new bridge while westbound traffic will remain on the old bridge. Two days will then be needed to modify the westbound lanes, preparing for the remaining traffic shift on the third day. Once all traffic has been moved to the new bridge, traffic conditions will be as they currently are with two eastbound and two westbound lanes maintained during all peak hours. Throughout the traffic shift and once it has been completed, access to all abutting properties and businesses will be maintained.  

After the traffic shift has been completed, pedestrians will also be relocated onto the new sidewalk on the south side of the new structure. Pedestrians are reminded that once the old bridge closes, it will become part of the project’s work zone and will not offer a safe walkway between Worcester and Shrewsbury.

Demolition of the old Kenneth F. Burns Bridge will commence after the successful shifting of traffic to the new structure. Demolition is currently anticipated to last roughly four months at which time construction on the other half of the new bridge will begin in the footprint of the original structure. When complete, the new Kenneth F. Burns Bridge will include three lanes in each direction, matching the abutting sections of Route 9.

The Kenneth F. Burns Bridge is being replaced through the Commonwealth’s historic, $3 billion Accelerated Bridge Program (ABP). For more information about this job, please visit www.mass.gov/massdot/kenburnsbridge or contact Stephanie Boundy at stephanie.boundy@state.ma.us or (857) 368-8904.

Selected Writings of Albert Southwick

As you may have read previously on this blog, Albert Southwick will be doing some book signing events this month.

SelectedWritingsIf you’re a fan of Southwick’s Thursday columns in the Telegram, you’ll really appreciate one of his new books — Selected Writings, Volume I.  Much of this book is material that originally appeared in the Telegram . . . but then nowhere else.  Until now.

Selected Writings, Volume I includes some of my favorite columns.  Having visited the American Sanitary Plumbing Museum when it was located in Worcester, I enjoyed rereading Southwick’s piece titled “Worcester’s First Loo?”  If you’ve ever hiked the East Side Trail and seen the remains of coal mines, you’ll appreciate the story “Worcester’s Big Coal Rush”.  Other local topics include gaslights, streetcars, the “Deep Cut” under Plantation Street, influenza, Worcester’s first waste recycling facility (a municipal piggery), bridging Lake Quinsigamond, newspaper intrigues, and elections that hinged on one vote.

Mr. Southwick’s columns in the Telegram sometimes discuss matters of wider interest, and this volume includes some of those.  Whether aircraft of the second World War, Eli Whitney, the first newspaper in the Colonies, U.S. Imperialism, or power struggles among the Roosevelts, Albert Southwick always has an interesting take on things.  And as a veteran of World War II, Southwick has some observations about Hiroshima that remind us about what front line troops were thinking regarding the prospect of having to invade Japan.

That all said, Selected Writings, Volume I isn’t just a collection of newspaper articles.  It includes texts of several talks/presentations that Southwick has given at various events, and some reminiscences of people and places that have been important to him.

Selected Writings, Volume I will be available for purchase at some upcoming book signing events, where you can get a copy autographed/personalized by Mr. Southwick himself.  It is also available online from Amazon.com.  If you enjoy Albert Southwick’s writing — especially if you’re looking for something to join your copies of Once Told Tales and More Once Told Tales on your bookshelf — then Selected Writings, Volume I would be a great addition to your library.