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Bridge work to begin this month

April 12, 2007

HANCOCK - Maryland State Highway Administration officials asked for the public's cooperation during an upcoming project on the U.S. 522 bridge over the Potomac River during a Hancock Town Council meeting Wednesday night.

Beginning April 23, about 500 feet of the bridge will be reduced to one lane, Greg Roby of the Highway Administration said.

A portable traffic light will be installed to direct traffic, he said.

The contractor, Alpha Painting and Construction Co. Inc., will be encapsulating the bridge with large tarps. The encapsulation will occur in stages, and the bridge will be painted, he said.

The bridge will remain one lane until November, he said.

Both Maryland and West Virginia own portions of the U.S. 522 bridge. Maryland is in charge of the painting project, with West Virginia helping to foot the bill, officials said.

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Roby expressed concern about rush-hour traffic on the bridge once it is reduced to one lane, and suggested to the mayor and council that local businesses might want to consider altering workers' shifts slightly during the project.

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