Businesses will Remain Open and Acessible During Shawsheen Bridge Repairs ~ October 2 to 5

In order to repair the Shawsheen River bridge along The Great Road, through traffic will be detoured from 8 pm on Friday, October 2, until 5 am on Monday, October 5.

“Businesses will remain open and accessible at either end of the detour,” confirmed DPW Director David Manugian. “Whether you’re headed to Jiffy Lube or Stop and Shop, you’ll be able to get there.”

State Delegation Joins Town to Remind Residents About Bridge Repair

The bridge on The Great Road spanning the Shawsheen River near Stop and Shop Plaza will be closed for repairs from the evening of Friday, October 2, to the morning of Monday, October 5.

State Representative Ken Gordon (D – Bedford), Senator Mike Barrett (D – Lexington), and Bedford Town Manager Sarah Stanton remind residents to seek alternate routes, if possible. The work will be contained within one weekend.

The rehabilitation plan was developed by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) after a recent Bridge Rating Report found that several of the bridge’s beams have an extremely low carrying capacity. The weekend of important repairs will restore the safety and structural stability of the bridge while minimizing inconvenience to residents and businesses. The bridge will re-open before the Monday morning commute and school bus schedule.

“Given the current structure of the bridge, there is no getting around the necessity of these repairs. However, I am happy that MassDOT will be able to make them so quickly and with such little inconvenience to the town,” said Rep. Gordon when the construction was first announced. “Drivers will be detoured for the weekend, but it is a small price for a safe and stable bridge for years to come.”

Fawn Lake Weekly Update ~ September 11, 2020

The Dredgit crew continues to dredge and haul, having just completed 4 full weeks of dredge operations in the lake.  This week they removed 1,012 cubic yards of sediments for a total of 3,698 yards, approximately 46% of the total amount to be cleared.  This material is being sent to the Lexington facility for reuse in their compost operations.  The dredge barge is working in the O – O cross-section (see construction drawings, sheet C-6),  which is almost the middle of the lake.  The dredged material continues to be all organic, with a few small rocks and a couple of coins mixed in at the bottom.

Great Road Detour for Bridge Repair ~ Weekend of October 2 – 5

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) will be replacing the Great Road (Route 4/225) bridge deck over the Shawsheen River as part of its emergency bridge repair program.

During the weekend closure, currently scheduled for Friday evening, October 2 to Monday morning, October 5, there will be no access across the bridge; vehicles and pedestrians will be detoured along Brooksbie Road, Page Road, and Shawsheen Road as shown on the attached map.  Access to local businesses and residences will be maintained at all times.

Fawn Lake Weekly Update, September 4, 2020

In spite of a few rain events, the Dredgit crew was able to dredge and haul all week, removing an additional 1,036 cubic yards of lake sediments for a total of 2,686 yards, approximately 33% of the total amount to be cleared.  This material is being sent to the Lexington facility for reuse in their compost operations.  The dredge barge has just about completed the P – P cross-section (see construction drawings, sheet C-6), and will be moving to section O – O in the middle of the lake after Labor Day.

Springs Road ~ Possible Delays on Friday Afternoon

A construction vehicle working with the DPW milling project on Springs Road, slipped off the roadway between Copeland and Ellingson Roads this morning.

Bedford Fire is on the scene to assure that no fuel leaked into the nearby wetlands.

Fawn Lake Weekly Update ~ August 28, 2020

The Dredgit crew continued to dredge and haul all week, removing an additional 800 cubic yards of lake sediments for a total of 1650 yards, approximately 20% of the total amount to be cleared under the contract.  This material is being sent to the Lexington facility for reuse in their compost operations.  The dredge barge is still working in the easterly portion of the lake, having finished the Q – Q cross-section and has moved to the P – P cross-section (see construction drawings, sheet C-6), which is about 35% dredged as of this report.

Page Road Micropaving Scheduled for Monday, August 31

The Bedford Department of Public Works will be paving Page Road between Springs Road and Brooksbie Road (Route 62) on Monday, August 31.

This section of Page Road will be detoured during the paving operation but will be open to local residents and emergency vehicles.

Micropaving is Expected to be Complete Early Next Week

Bedford’s summer 2020 micropaving project is complete for Page Road and The Great Road.

A second course of the paving will be applied to North Road and the westerly end of Concord Road. Two courses will be added to the rest of Concord Road, between Willson Park and Davis Road.

Fawn Lake Weekly Update ~ Friday, August 14, 2020

Work this week was to make the final fittings and connections to operate the dredge equipment while continuing to run the weed harvester across the lake.  The harvester has now removed approximately 75 cubic yards of aquatic vegetation which is currently stockpiled at the boat launch to continue draining.  As noted in the project plan, the southwestern portion of the lake is not being cleared;  this will maintain the current habitat for species that exist in this type of resource area.

Travel Writing in the Time of Pandemic

It’s that time of an election year when the weeds are pulling ahead, exceeding all expectations, and the plants are literally falling by the wayside. We don’t need pollsters to predict this will happen. Things have been heated on many fronts lately, but eerily quiet in town.

In a “normal” year we might actually leave the ‘hood sometime in the summer months and by the time we get home and catch up with our friends, the thrill of the window boxes is gone and we graciously let them do as they will, yanking out the petunias and geraniums and eventually replacing them with teensy pumpkins.

Being home for the summer without the ability to even drive much of anywhere means we get a ringside seat of the yearly competition between the plants we actually put in the ground and whatever Mother Nature offers.

Aftermath of Isaias ~ Sunset Road In the Dark for More Than 48 Hours

At 9:12 on Tuesday evening, as the tail end of Isaias departed Bedford, a tree fell across Sunset Road. Eleven homes were plunged into darkness and a 48-hour saga began.

The DPW delivered saw horses, blocked the road, and notified Eversource on Wednesday morning.

According to sources, no one in the DPW’s Grounds Division is certified to touch trees tangled in power lines. The Town is required to notify Eversource, and wait its turn for the company’s arborists and linemen to repair the damage.

Fawn Lake ~ Weekly Update ~August 7, 2020

The Dredgit crew made significant progress this week, erecting and connecting the multiple pieces of equipment needed for the dredge operation.  The screener, shaker, conveyors, centrifuges, and dewatering tanks are all in line ready to start.  Additionally, the weed harvester has made several passes across the lake to cut and remove the water lilies in preparation for the dredge operation.  This alone has made a significant visible improvement to the lake.  Approximately 50 cubic yards of aquatic vegetation has been cleared.

Compost Center ~ Summer Schedule, through August 31

The Department of Public Works recently announced a return to the summer schedule for the Compost Center.

The Compost Center, located at 108 Carlisle Road, will be open every other Saturday from 8 am to 1 pm, and every other Wednesday from 8:30 am until 2:30 pm at 106 Carlisle Road. The autumn schedule will announced at the end of September.

Local Skies Offer a Glimpse of Comet NEOWISE

Editor’s Note: If you’re interested in comet-spotting in Bedford, local astronomer Alan MacRobert posted the following message on the First Parish announcement list on Saturday morning and authorized The Bedford Citizen to share it with the community.

Abby and I found the comet pretty easily just after dark, over the farmland next to Little Meadow off  Davis Road. Averted vision helped bring out more length of the tail. The view in 10×50 binoculars was fantastic!  A tiny bright head and a classic curved comet dust tail, just like the pictures. No color, no visible gas tail (which would be blue and straight).

West Nile Virus ~ Mosquito Treatment Program

The Bedford Department of Public Works has started its annual program to treat catch basins to prevent West Nile Virus, a disease carried by the Culex (Q-lex) mosquito.  

This mosquito mostly breeds in storm drains, but can also survive in any open container holding even a half-inch of water.