Construction on Gold Star Bridge will bring traffic delays

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NEW LONDON -- There is a lot of work to be done on the southbound half of the Gold Star Bridge.

According to Keith Schoppe, project engineer "We’re gonna patch up the foundations, do steel repairs, were going to strip asphalt off the bridge deck, were gonna re-membrane it, that protects the deck, then we’re gonna repave it "

All to the tune of $20 million and two years of your life. That’s total time – not stuck in traffic. But the northbound bridge? That's even bigger. Northbound has steel replacement, which will improve load capacity, and replace the entire bridge deck. A four year plan, and a potential cost 10 times greater. After all , there’s 6000 feet, a million square feet of bridge deck that spans much longer than just the Thames.

But if the folks doing construction on the Gold Star bridge want to get some tips on keeping road warriors safe - all they have to do is look south –to the Pearl Harbor Bridge , which just wrapped up nearly a decade of construction – affecting road warriors every step of the way

Rick Fontana, Deputy Director of Emergency Ops in New Haven looks at the Pearl Harbor Bridge with pride. "It was well organized, well collaborated…all the agencies played a role in it’s success"

And the key to it all – what he says the crews on the gold star have to have with commuters? Communication. "We wanted to make sure that they knew when there was a traffic shift, when there was a lane closure, and making sure to avoid those times and go a different way"

And Schoppe agrees. "They did a tremendous job, on the other bridge, of getting the word out and letting know in advance everything that was happening ….in essence that’s what we’re gonna try to do here."

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