In the June 17 Westerly Sun article, “Boombridge Road bridge project cost ballooning,” a Westerly town councilor is quoted as saying, “It’s a bridge that’s mostly used by cows. For Connecticut Department of Transportation to design a $3.2 million cow bridge blows me away.”
This is a gross misstatement. I have lived near the Boombridge Road bridge for almost 23 years. When it was still open for traffic, it was almost exclusively used by motor vehicles numerous times every day. Cows were maybe transported over the bridge about 10 to 15 times per year. I have voted for this councilor every time he has run for Westerly Town Council. It was disappointing to read that he actually said this when it is apparent he has no knowledge of the Boombridge Road bridge and how many people used it on a daily basis. This bridge has been closed for 10 years, and every day there are a multitude of motor vehicles that still travel down the road to the bridge, only to have to turn around when they see it is closed.
Also, the town engineer, Sheila MacGauvran, was quoted as stating this “was basically a one-lane bridge,” and this was one of the reasons the redesign is taking so long in an effort to “meet minimum federal standards.” This bridge has been a two-lane bridge for probably close to 50 years.
This bridge is similar to the Stillman Avenue bridge in Pawcatuck, which was recently fixed. It cuts down considerably on many people’s travel time by having a bridge there.
It is crazy how long it is taking to get this bridge fixed or redone, and there seems to be no end in sight.