Willimansett Bridge

Massachusetts Department of Transportation | Chicopee/Holyoke, MA

Built in 1891, the historic Willimansett Bridge carries Route 116 over the Connecticut River and the Pioneer Valley Railroad. The bridge provides a vital link between the cities of Chicopee and Holyoke, Massachusetts, and is a key driver for commerce in the area.

Benesch provided complex bridge design for a full rehabilitation of the historic 793-foot-long structure, consisting of four 170-foot long through truss spans and two 51-foot long through girder spans for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. Project components included:

  • In-depth bridge inspection utilizing special bridge rigging
  • Rehabilitation of truss spans, including an Exodermic Bridge Deck System and metal grid sidewalk replacement
  • Stringer, floor beam and truss repairs and strengthening
  • Complete replacement of through girder spans with a two-span continuous steel through girder superstructure; seismic analysis and retrofit based on a site-specific seismic assessment
  • Temporary bridges for pedestrian use during construction
  • Temporary post tensioning was used to allow for a complete replacement of the bottom chords

Since opening to traffic, the bridge has made a positive impact on the residents and businesses in the communities it serves.

Practice Areas


  • 2016, Engineering Excellence Bronze Award, American Council of Engineering Companies - Massachusetts