UPDATE: On Friday, August 26, the MBTA announced that its Dorchester Avenue bridge closure would be extended late into the fall, and that the bridge won't reopen until November 7th. The bridge had previously been scheduled to reopen on Sept. 1. This story was updated on Tuesday, August 30 to reflect the postponed opening date.
A section of Dorchester Avenue, a major bike and pedestrian connection between Dorchester and South Boston, will be closed due to bridge work between Von Hillern and Kemp Streets this summer.
In order to prepare for its replacement next year, the MBTA will close the Dorchester Avenue Bridge over its Red Line and Old Colony commuter rail tracks to all traffic from June 13 to August 31, 2022 November 6.
The last time this bridge was rehabilitated was 47 years ago, in 1975. Crews will do a range of preparation work during the closure, including driving piles that will support the future bridge and replacing the Red Line tunnel roof, according to an MBTA press release.
The press release also warned that riders of the Red Line and Commuter Rail should also expect disruption to service “on select weekends in the future, with more information on alternate services provided to riders soon.”
The T is recommending that bike riders and pedestrians use Boston Avenue to get around the bridge closure.
The T’s recommended bike detour routes use each one-way neighborhood streets. Coming from the north, folks on bikes can use Dorset St to connect from Boston St. to Dorchester Ave; coming from the south into the city, folks can use Bellflower St. to connect from Dorchester Ave. to Boston St. (see map above).
The replacement bridge, which is scheduled to be installed in 2023, will not include a physically separated bike lane, according to an MBTA spokesperson, but it will provide a painted bike lane.
“The painted option was chosen for this project due to the relatively short length of the bridge being replaced, and considering the limitations of the space needed to transition into and to terminate a physically separated bicycle lane within the project limits,” wrote an MBTA spokesperson in an email to StreetsblogMASS. “However, this does not prevent future improvements to be implemented should the City of Boston consider making changes to the Dorchester Ave. corridor.”