About the Project

PROJECT LOCATION:

This project is located along Route 15 (Merritt Parkway) in both the northbound and southbound directions from the Greenwich/Stamford town line (log mile 7.67) to 220 feet north of the South Avenue Bridge in New Canaan (log mile 14.20) for a total length of 6.53 miles.

PROJECT BACKGROUND:

This project has been initiated by the Connecticut Department of Transportation (the Department) as part of a corridor improvement effort to provide safety improvements and enhancements to the Merritt Parkway, while maintaining its unique character and aesthetics. Two projects known as “The Gateway Projects” located at both ends of the parkway and a third project located in Greenwich have been completed. Construction has also just completed a 9 mile section located in the towns of Fairfield and Trumbull. With the completion of project no. 135-270 approximately 70 percent of the parkway will be upgraded.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION:

This project involves resurfacing Route 15 in both directions as well as providing various safety improvements and aesthetic enhancements. All work will conform to the "Merritt Parkway Guidelines for General Maintenance and Transportation Improvements" recommendations, prepared by The Merritt Parkway Working Group in June 1994. In addition, this project also involves the rehabilitation of the existing landscaping by removing invasive species, preserving existing plantings, and adding additional plantings in accordance with the "Merritt Parkway Landscape Master Plan" dated October 1994 and the rehabilitation and restoration of historic bridge structures in accordance with the “Merritt Parkway Bridge Restoration Guide” dated May 2002.

Roadway improvements include the following: widening the existing shoulders to 8 feet (4 feet paved shoulder and 4 feet reinforced grass shoulder); replacing the existing guiderail with Merritt Parkway Guide Rail (steel backed timber railing); correcting existing cross slopes of the roadway to meet standards; removing rock ledges within the recommended clear zone or protecting it with Merritt Parkway Guide Rail or Merritt Parkway Concrete Barrier; installing a slip lined concrete curb and gutter system along the median for drainage and delineation purposes; resurfacing the roadway; installing new drainage; installing Merritt Parkway Median Barrier in areas where the width of the roadway is limited.

The following bridges will be addressed under Project No. 135-270: Bridge No’s: 701, 703, 704, 705, 706, 707, 709 and 5810 will require cosmetic work (various parapet work, graffiti removal, surface and crack repairs to concrete, fencing, overlay, etc.). Bridge No. 704 will require additional work including removing the material on top of the bridge to expose the concrete arch or frame; repair any deteriorated sections; apply a waterproofing membrane; reestablish the roadway to its original profile; perform any necessary underside improvements and cleaning of the bridge. Plans, specifications and estimates will be prepared by the Bridge Design Unit.

In addition, four other bridges requiring major work will be separated into individual bridge projects but will still be included in the contract for Project No. 135-270. The Bridge Design unit will develop plans for Bridge Nos. 700 (Project No. 135-304), 702 (Project No. 135-316), 708 (Project No. 89-126) and 712 (Project No. 89-125). DOT Rails will develop plans for Bridge No 710R (Project No. 303-007). These projects were initiated as stand-alone projects because they were found to be structurally deficient during routine bridge inspections and require extensive rehabilitation. The scope of work for these bridges includes removing the material on top of the bridge to expose the concrete arch or frame; repair any deteriorated sections; apply a waterproofing membrane; reestablish the roadway or railroad to its original profile; perform any necessary underside repairs; and finally clean the bridge.

These projects will be undertaken with federal and state funding. It was determined, on October 13, 2011, that this project would have FHWA oversight for the design and construction phases. Design exceptions were requested for this project and approved on January 4, 2012. Value Engineering was also performed on September 21, 2009.

MAINTENANCE AND PROTECTION OF TRAFFIC:

Stage construction will be required. Lane closures during daytime and night hours are anticipated. Lane closures will be limited to non-peak hours; otherwise two lanes will be open to traffic.

PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT PROGRAM:

The Department’s public involvement procedures were followed and encompassed a mass media notification, town official and State Representatives coordination, and other personal contacts as required. Public information meetings were conducted in the City of Stamford and Town of New Canaan on June 11, 2012 and June 27, 2012 respectively. Also, this project was presented to members of the Merritt Parkway Advisory Committee (MPAC) on April 25, 2012 and to members of the Merritt Parkway Conservancy on September 7, 2012.

HISTORICAL DESIGNATION:

The Merritt Parkway has the following designations: • State Scenic Road • National Scenic Byway • Listed on the National Register of Historic Places