Red Line bridge in Dorchester replaced in 56 hours

Construction workers use accelerated bridge construction techniques to replace an MBTA bridge near the corner of Dickens and Clayton St. in Dorchester. This complete demolition and construction of the new bridge is expected to take no more then 56 hours. JEREMIAH ROBINSON/METRO
Construction workers use accelerated bridge construction techniques to replace an MBTA bridge near the corner of Dickens and Clayton St. in Dorchester. This complete demolition and construction of the new bridge is expected to take no more then 56 hours. JEREMIAH ROBINSON/METRO

A Red Line bridge in Dorchester was replaced over the weekend, making it the first Accelerated Bridge Construction project of an MBTA subway line.

On Saturday, workers began to demolish the 102-year old Clayton Street bridge. The new replacement bridge was put into place by 3 a.m. Sunday, according to MBTA Spokeswoman Kelly Smith, who said commuters could expect the line to be up and running by Monday’s commute.

If a typical phased construction method had been used for the project, it would have taken 30 months to replace the bridge, Smith said.

“The Red Line is obviously an incredibly busy line and carries a significant amount of passengers. Anytime we can get something done quicker, for less money and with less of an inconvenience to our customers, that’s something we’re happy about,” said Smith.

The replacement bridge was pre-assembled on temporary supports at a staging area, then carried a short distance along Clayton Street and lowered into position.

Although no plans have been announced, transportation officials are not ruling out embarking on more speedy projects in the future.

“So far this (accelerated work) has been a success,” Smith said. “This is definitely something we’re happy to have in our tool box.”

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS


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