Alexander Street/Road in Princeton and West Windsor is scheduled to reopen by the end of next week as the concurrent Mercer County and NJDOT bridge replacement projects near completion, officials announced today. Road work started Nov. 6.

Alexander Road is scheduled to reopen to traffic following the completion of two separate bridge replacement projects that concurrently replaced three bridges near each other on Alexander Street/Alexander Road in Princeton and West Windsor. Mercer County replaced two bridges and NJDOT replaced one bridge. The road is called Alexander Street in Princeton and becomes Alexander Road in West Windsor at the D&R Canal, which divides the municipalities.

Mercer County is in the process of competing final paving and striping for its project. Once the county work is completed, NJDOT will have access to the portion of Alexander Road between the bridge over the D&R Canal and the county bridge for final paving. Once this work is complete, the road will reopen. The NDJOT bridge over the D&R Canal is complete, and the sidewalk opened for pedestrians on May 1.

The NJDOT project replaced the bridge over the D&R Canal between Princeton and West Windsor, which was built in 1948 and was in poor condition. The existing structure was a three-span, simply supported, timber stringer-type bridge with a timber deck overlaid with asphalt. There was a 6-foot wide timber sidewalk on each side with continuous, rolled steel beams below. The existing structure featured one travel lane in each direction and no shoulders.

The new bridge is a single-span consisting of a beam-supported concrete deck on reinforced concrete abutments. The outer edge of the structure and concrete wingwalls feature a wood façade. The new bridge railings and guiderail meet current standards and the design is respectful of the historic nature of the D&R Canal and surrounding area. The new roadway will consists of two 12-foot lanes, two five-foot shoulders and two five-foot wide timber sidewalks with concrete curbs.

The Mercer County project replaced two structures: the bridge over the Stony Brook and the Bridge over Alexander Creek, which are north of the D&R Canal. The existing truss bridge over the Stony Brook was installed in 1989 as a temporary replacement to the structure in place at the time. Construction of a permanent bridge became a priority as the truss bridge has begun to deteriorate and the width was not adequate to accommodate bus and truck traffic. Bridge railings and guiderail were upgraded to meet current standards, and the design is respectful of the historic nature of the D&R Canal and surrounding area.

The bridge just north of Basin Street over Alexander Creek also was replaced due to deteriorated structural conditions. Both bridges were built with the same roadway configuration as the new D&R Canal Bridge being constructed by NJDOT.