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Does the I-95 bridge really need replacing?

Letters to the editor. Send signed letters to Nancy@NancyOnNorwalk.com with a suggested headline.

We are all grateful for the remarkably rapid clean-up and reopening of Interstate 95 following the fire which destroyed the Fairfield Avenue overpass! But I’m wondering about the need to replace the overpass at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.

Looking at a map, before the fire there were three overpasses over I-95 within three-tenths of a mile (a 7-minute walk): Stuart Ave., Fairfield Ave., and Ferris Ave. Again, looking at the map, all three of these streets converge into Fairfield Avenue immediately South of the highway. That should raise a question if Norwalk truly needs a hugely expensive overpass at this location…or not.

When I-95 was constructed, the turnpike split many communities in half and residents demanded good connectivity across the new barriers in their communities. That was about 70 years ago! Do we still need that connection? Could we live happily with 2 overpasses instead of 3? The neighborhood that was connected by the Stuart Avenue overpass was replaced long ago with the Route 7 interchange. Whether this is a Federal, State, or Norwalk project to replace the overpass, it WILL be at taxpayer expense, and we will all pay.

Comments

6 responses to “Does the I-95 bridge really need replacing?”

  1. sue Haynie

    I agree with Alan Kibbe. The fact that the bridge was redundant occured to me also. It will cost taxpayers millions for no clear purpose.

  2. Scott Vetare

    Alan. The answer is simply YES.
    Fairfield ave is a main road that the emergency vehicles use to get to sono. If they don’t replace it then these large fire trucks would have to deal with Cedar st. It’s not ideal.
    Emergencies need quick response.

    1. William Morton

      Also, Tractor Trailers getting off the Fairfield Ave I-95 Ramp would have to make a sharp turn onto Cedar St to reach Connecticut Ave. and if they need to go North bound it would be another sharp turn from Cedar St to the North bound CT Ave.

  3. Sadly while the two neighboring Bridges could easily be removed when they are old and done that one we kind of need sadly mostly from a logistical standpoint the other two bridges are not ideal however we should also find out how much it’s going to cost the taxpayers because insurance companies are on the hook for a good portion of this

  4. David Muccigrosso

    I generally try to celebrate iconoclastic takes like this, but as someone who USED to use the Fairfield Ave bridge to the exclusion of most of the others… it’s definitely the most important of the four/five bridges.

    If I were putting all five in order of most to least important:

    1. Scribner
    2. Fairfield
    3. Cedar
    4. Taylor
    5. Stuart

    Getting rid of the last 3 would hamper connectivity, but not cripple it.

    But TBH, we really shouldn’t be killing connectivity here to begin with. I applaud the noble intention of iconoclasm — there are a LOT of sacred cows that need to be gored in this town — but the devil’s in the details on this one.

  5. Jorge Calvo

    Well, the replacement is already reflected on the recent property tax bills for sure!

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