Norwalk Bridge Closed To Boat Traffic To Prevent Metro-North Delays

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NORWALK, Conn. -- The Coast Guard is telling boaters the rotating Walk Bridge in Norwalk along the Metro-North Railroad will be out of service to river traffic so train service won't be affected by planned repairs.

The Walk Bridge, which spans the Norwalk River, was stuck open on Friday and late last month, snarling commutes for thousands of riders.

The bridge has been kept in the closed position to ensure train service is not affected. Under normal conditions, it is opened to allow boats to pass through.

The Coast Guard said in a notice that the Connecticut Department of Transportation has contracted engineers to make emergency repairs as soon as possible.

The repairs are expected to take several weeks depending on the extent of damage.

The bridge has failed to close properly twice in recent weeks causing major disruption in commutes across Fairfield County.

Here is the statement from the Coast Guard:

"The Norwalk Railroad Bridge is out of service until further notice due to mechanical problems. On June 6, 2014, the bridge experienced gear failures which prompted CT Department of Transportation (DOT) to keep the bridge in the closed position to ensure unimpeded rail service for AMTRAK and Metro North.

"DOT has contracted engineers to effect emergency repairs as soon as possible. These emergency repairs can be accomplished with an extended closing of the bridge and unless these repairs are made, the bridge will remain inoperable. At this time, the repairs are estimated to take several weeks to accomplish depending on the extent of the damage.

"Future MSIBs will be published with updates as emergency repairs are being completed. Please contact Lieutenant Ben Duarte at 203-468-4596 if you have any questions or concerns about the repairs."

Signed by H.L. Morrison, Commander, U.S. Coast Guard

Acting Captain of the Port Long Island Sound

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Comments (5)

Can anyone explain what exactly the problem is? Gear failures? Why would this require a new bridge? Will the people who did the Danbury branch signals that do not work be in charge?

Has anyone asked the governor why it's goin to cost $649 million to replace this bridge? The replacement for the tappan zee bridge costs $3.9 billion -- it's an 8-lane, twin span bridge that is almost 5 miles long. And this relatively small bridge is going to cost 20% of that?

What would be a more meaningful comparison would be the cost of replacing the Strofolino (sp) bridge. Comparing the TZ to a movable railroad bridge is textbook apples and oranges.

So I guess Devine Brothers goes out of business if they can't get the barges in and out to the concrete plant. Or else they will have to raise the price to an uncompetitive level to account for bringing in the material by truck. I hope no one was planning on getting their sailboat to or from United Marine.

This is the exact opposite of Breaking News. Email when the bridge won't close, not when it won't open. No need to bother people about this.