SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – It’s the second day that drivers encountered a road block trying to get onto Interstate 91 in Springfield’s North End.
More barriers have been put up and more crews were out working on the section of Birnie Avenue that will be closed until early this winter. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation shut down the I-91 on-ramp from Birnie Avenue just north of Exit 8 on Tuesday.
Wednesday, there were more jersey barriers in the roadway, to protect crews that were out surveying and beginning work to create a temporary off-ramp. That ramp will give drivers access to downtown Springfield during the next phase of construction on the elevated portion of Interstate 91, starting this winter.
Some drivers say they are already seeing 15 to 20 minutes added to their commute without being able to access I-91 South from Birnie Avenue. Heriberto Rodriguez of Springfield told 22News, “I usually get on the highway right here, the on ramp, so I have to go onto Plainfield Street now and go all the way around. And it’s not only me, but everybody else so it makes it harder.”
Two of the three posted detours around the closed road lead drivers onto Main Street in Springfield, boosting traffic downtown.