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December 9, 2010

States close Memorial Bridge

By David Hench
Staff Writer

The drawbridge connecting Kittery with Portsmouth, N.H., was closed to vehicles today after a detailed inspection found significant deterioration.

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Memorial Bridge was closed at noon today to all but pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

John Patriquin/Staff Photographer

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A January 2009 photo of the Memorial Bridge.

File photo/The Portland Press Herald

Additional Photos Below

Memorial Bridge was closed at noon to all but pedestrian and bicycle traffic, according to a press release from the New Hampshire Department of Transportation.

An inspection found two gusset plates, which connect bridge beams to load-bearing columns, were unsafe. Both are on the southbound side of the bridge.

Traffic was directed to use either the Sarah Long Bridge, which is the U.S. Route 1 Bypass or the Interstate 95 bridge.

Transportation officials from the two states are discussing what repairs are warranted since the bridge is scheduled to be demolished in favor of a new bridge a year and a half from now.

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Additional Photos

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In this Nov. 30, 2010, photo, New Hampshire transportation officials inspect the Memorial Bridge connecting Portsmouth, N.H., with Kittery, Maine. The bridge, which opened in 1923, was closed today due to structural deterioration.



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