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The records consist of one copy of the historic resources archive documentation (text and photos on archival quality materials) for the Stillwater Viaduct Bridge No. 278 prepared by PAL (The Public Archaeology Laboratory, Inc.) of Pawtucket, Rhode Island for the Department of Transportation.
The Stillwater Viaduct (Rhode Island Bridge No. 278), constructed between 1932 and 1933, is an approximately 500-foot-Iong, multiple span, reinforced concrete bridge spanning the Woonasquatucket River in Smithfield, Rhode Island. The viaduct is significant in the areas of transportation, engineering, and government. It is a component in the Washington Highway (RI Route 116), an early circumferential highway connecting radial routes around the Providence metropolitan area, and is a notable component of Rhode Island's early attempts to accommodate the automobile age through highway infrastructure. The bridge is a large and well-executed example of reinforced concrete open spandrel arch construction, an early-twentieth century construction method noted for its economy of materials, and demonstrates the technical acumen and attention to aesthetic appearance ofthe Rhode Island State Board of Public Roads (SBPR). It is the smallest of three major open spandrel reinforced concrete arch bridges in the state, the others being the 1928-1930 Washington Bridge (Bridge No. 200) on Route 195 in Providence and East Providence, and the Ashton Viaduct/Joseph E. Russo Memorial Bridge (Bridge No. 275) on Route 116 in Cumberland and Lincoln, built 1934-1945. The bridge is associated with the ambitious state road building programs ofthe 1920s and 1930s, and is a large and complicated project with standardized details that illustrates the state 's commitment to highway and bridge improvement, and the high organizational, professional, and technical level of the bridge division that designed it. Author: Matthew A. Kierstead, Industrial Historian, PAL, Pawtucket, RI
Scope and Contents: The records consist of one copy of the historic resources archive documentation (text and photos on archival quality materials) for the Stillwater Viaduct Bridge No. 278 prepared by PAL (The Public Archaeology Laboratory, Inc.) of Pawtucket, Rhode Island for the Department of Transportation. The Department of Transportation rehabilitation of Stillwater Viaduct Bridge No. 278 project was found to have an adverse effect on the Stillwater Viaduct Bridge No. 278, a historic property that was determined eligible for listing in the the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.