EVERETT — Rainy weather often brings heavy traffic, but drivers in downtown Everett got a bit of relief when the Broadway Bridge reopened Tuesday afternoon.
The bridge had been closed since Jan. 30 for what was expected to be more than a year.
The 102-year-old span had been deteriorating and operating under weight restrictions since 2008. The bridge had last been refurbished in 1931, but prior to its closure it still bore 40,000 vehicles per day.
Construction crews have wrapped up most of the work early, including weather-dependent paving, significantly ahead of the projected March completion date.
“We had just enough weather breaks to barely pull it off here in a few weeks,” Everett city engineer Ryan Sass said.
The northbound lanes on the new span opened just after 2 p.m. The southbound lanes followed at 2:58 p.m., Sass said.
Some of the traffic cameras installed during construction will remain in place, Sass said.
The last bits of construction on the $13.6 million project won’t get wrapped up until early February.
The bridge is now open with two lanes of through-traffic in each direction, plus a turn lane. Drivers still can’t park on the bridge, however.
“We’re going to keep the parking lane closed because the contractor will need to get in there from time to time,” Sass said.
The crews also need to install a pedestrian barrier and lighting, and some of the pavement markings need to be repainted.
Sass said the project will likely come in well within budget. The contract with Interwest Construction of Burlington has an early completion incentive built in for up to $50,000, he said.