Leedsville Bridge to close as of May 3
SHARON â€” The bridge on County Route 2 between Amenia Union Road and the entrance to Knibloe Hill Road in Sharon â€” the Leedsville Bridgeâ€” will close May 3 for repairs. It is expected to reopen by Sept. 1.
According to Matt Dutcavich, assistant civil engineer II for Dutchess Countyâ€™s Department of Public Works, the bridge across Mill Brook will be completely replaced this summer, due to structural deficiencies.
â€œThe New York State Department of Transportation conducts biennial inspections and this bridge is currently the highest priority bridge replacement by Dutchess County,â€ Dutcavich explained in an e-mail.
The project is funded completely by federal stimulus money. The work was awarded to the lowest bidder for just under $520,000.
Mill Brook is classified as a trout stream by the stateâ€™s Department of Environmental Conservation, meaning the contractor will only be allowed to perform work in the stream between May 1 and Sept. 30, Dutcavich explained. The bridge is also adjacent to wetlands, and the project had to receive state and federal Army Corps of Engineers approval before moving forward.
The big question for most local residents is what effect the roadâ€™s closure will have on them.
From the bridge on the New York state side, one can either travel north on Route 2, taking a right onto Route 343, which will bring them across state lines into the center of Sharon; or travel south down Amenia Union Road, picking up Clark Hill Road (a back road) or the Kent Road farther down in South Amenia, which turns into Route 341 when it crosses the state border into Connecticut.
Sharon residents are also being advised by town officials that they can use West Woods Roads No. 1 and No. 2 as alternative routes for traveling to Skiff Mountain and Kent.
Dutcavich said notices will be sent to surrounding area residents alerting them to the construction work and the detours available, and the county Web site, dutchessny.gov, will have updated information about the progress of the work.