- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 18, 2017

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) - The 4 million-pound center lift span for the new Sarah Mildred Long Bridge connecting New Hampshire and Maine has floated up the Piscataqua River to its new home.

The float-in happened Wednesday for the new bridge, which will move traffic over the river on the Route 1 Bypass. The tide helped lift the span into place. The span sat on a giant barge and was pushed by another barge moved along by tugboats.

After 76 years of use, the former bridge was closed in August 2016 due to mechanical failure and the cited high cost to repair it amid construction of a replacement bridge.

Maritime traffic on the river, within a 300-yard radius of the bridge, has been closed this week for the float-in.

The project is scheduled to be completed by June 1, 2018.

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