Demolition of Memorial Bridge Begins With "Float Out"

Feb 6, 2012

The demolition of the Memorial Bridge begins Tuesday. The 90-year-old lift bridge, which crosses the Piscataqua River between Portsmouth and Kittery Maine, has long been in a state of disrepair.

The bridge closed permanently to vehicle traffic in July of last year.

Weather and barge setup permitting, the removal and “float out” of the lift span of the Memorial Bridge is expected to begin Tuesday morning at 9:00 a.m.

“A barge is going to be floated in placed underneath the lift span section,” New Hampshire Department of Transportation spokesman Bill Boynton explained.

He said the span will be lifted off the plates that it sits on and cables will be cut.

“It will be floated out from its current location and position near Prescott Park in Portsmouth,” Boynton said. From there it continues down to Boston where it can be further dismantled.

Boynton said people can observe the “float out” from Prescott Park, Badger Island, Four Tree Island, and Pierce Island. 

The almost $90 million project is scheduled to be complete by July 2013.