Mitchell River Draw Bridge Work Continues to Cause Headaches

CHATHAM – Trouble-plagued renovations to Chatham’s Mitchell River Draw Bridge have been causing headaches for area motorists, pedestrians, and now boaters too.

Recent weather changes, including high heat and humidity, have led to numerous closures over the last several months.

Now the town’s Department of Natural Resources has announced that, effective immediately, and until further notice, the bridge will not be opening for boat traffic.

Officials cite ‘operational issues’ for the closure, which will allow for continued vehicular and pedestrian usage.

“What has been happening is with the rain and presumably the humidity, is causing certain timber members to swell, and they have actually swelled beyond what the designers had originally anticipated,” said Chatham Coastal Resources Director Ted Keon.

This has left “the gaps that they have left in the bridge to take up the swelling, thus pushing the beams beyond their limits.”

The $14 million dollar structure, which was constructed back in 2016, has left work crews from SPS New England Inc and MassDOT having to trim multiple pieces in order to stop them from rubbing together.

The last repair project spanned over three days, leading to traffic delays in the area.

Keon says that repair work will continue through the fall, “Come the fall, I think the engineers are going to come back with what they think are some longer-term more permanent fixes.”

About NewsCenter

The award-winning NewsCenter provides the Cape Cod community with a constant, credible source for local news. We are on the job seven days a week.
737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy