The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) announced on October 10th that they will be restricting travel through the Sakonnet River Channel for approximately one month, starting Monday, October 23. The restrictions are needed to allow for the safe removal of the old Sakonnet River Bridge.

While bridge demolition activities are underway from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, vessels will be unable to enter or pass through the channel. The restrictions are scheduled to last through Monday, November 27.

RIDOT will reopen the channel to marine traffic each day at 6 p.m. Additionally, the channel will be open all day on Sundays and for two full weekends in early November to better accommodate marine traffic. Seasonal boaters needing to transit the channel to haul their boats for the winter should plan accordingly.

The full schedule is as follows:

Channel Closed:

October 23 through November 27: Monday through Saturday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.

Channel Open:

Every Sunday

Channel Also Open:

• Friday, October 27 from 3:30 p.m. to Saturday, October 28 at 6 a.m.
• Friday, November 3 at 3:30 p.m. through Monday, November 6 at 6 a.m.
• Friday, November 10 at 3:30 p.m. though Monday, November 13 at 6 a.m.

During this first phase of demolition, RIDOT is removing approximately 6.2 million pounds of steel and 2,700 cubic yards of concrete across 17 spans between the bridge’s piers. The project is on time and on budget, with final completion scheduled for Summer 2018.

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Ryan Belmore is the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp, LLC. Belmore has led What's Up Newp since December 2012. Belmore also serves as the Sr. Editor - North America for Mountain News - publisher of OnTheSnow. In his spare time, Belmore serves as the Vice President for the Board of Directors at Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors at Lucy's Hearth. Belmore is also a member and supporter of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers. Send questions, tips, and story ideas to