North Washington Street Bridge Construction Targeted for Summer 2017 [Video]

The design to replace the North Washington Street Bridge is currently 75% complete as officials continue their community meetings to show the design plans.  A Public Information meeting was held at the Nazzaro Center on October 20, 2016, providing an in-depth discussion on the plan to replace the 1,100 foot section of the bridge. The goal of the project is to design the bridge to cater to the future generations over the course of the next century by encompassing a “multi modal” approach to allow for several types of transportation. Since the 25% renderings, changes to the design have brought an added bus lane heading southbound while preserving the option to allow for a long term inner harbor ferry service, if needed.

The current bridge has been in service since 1898, the 118 years worth of wear and tear are taking a toll as repairs are currently being performed on the structure while the replacement project ensues. Targeting the summer of 2017 for the construction start date, the overall construction will take 3-4 years, depending on construction constraints with shifts, traffic, events, etc.

Scene Selection of the full meeting video shown below: 

(00:00) Opening Remarks.
(03:26) Presentation begins, Project overview and background.
(07:27) Presentation of 75% design.
(31:53) Design details and vision for the bridge.
(40:22) Public Comments.

Design: Looking to compliment the design of the Zakim bridge, the highest point of the bridge is the middle section where sidewalks will span to almost 20 feet, allowing for seating to make it a destination. The bridge hopes to celebrate the past and the future by incorporating elements of design from landmarks such as the Boston Custom House, the Boston Garden, Zakim bridge, USS Constitution, Old North Church, and the Bunker Hill Monument. One interesting component is the median that separates cars from cycle tracks and the sidewalk, it will have plants to add greenery to the bridge.

Improvements will be made to the harborwalk section that lies below, raising the path by 2.5 feet will prepare for rising tides, while rebuilding the path with a smooth curved designed and railings to match the new bridge. The pathway under the bridge will be closed during construction.

MassDOT will be handling public notifications throughout construction. Providing extensive signage spanning all major routes inbound and outbound, warning of bridge closures while providing alternate routes.

Written statements and other exhibits in place of, or in addition to, oral statements made at the Public Meeting regarding the proposed undertaking are to be submitted to Patricia Leavenworth, P.E., Chief Engineer, MassDOT, 10 Park Plaza, Boston, MA 02116, ATTN: Bridge Project Management, Project File No. 604173. Such submissions will also be accepted at the meeting. Mailed statements and exhibits intended for inclusion in the public meeting transcript must be postmarked within ten (10) business days of this Public Meeting. Project inquiries may be emailed to