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Bridge artifacts sought by state

A ferry service now links Crown Point and Addison, Vt.

The new Lake Champlain Bridge is scheduled to open Oct. 9 - despite a 65-day extension to its project schedule granted by the state DOT to contractor Flatiron Construction in March.

Flatiron Construction encountered underwater remnants of the old Champlain Bridge. That debris hampered Flatiron's ability to drill shafts for the substructure of the new span. In addition, winter weather conditions slowed work, causing Flatiron to ask for the extension.

DOT officials believe, however, an accelerated summer work schedule will allow the bridge to open as planned this fall.

Flatiron is under contract to build the new $70 million modified network tied-arch span within 500 days of groundbreaking. The contract includes a provision requiring Flatiron to absorb the costs of the adjacent, temporary ferry service - about $30,000 a day - for every day beyond the 500-day limit. The contract also provides a financial incentive - up to $1.5 million - for Flatiron to complete the work in less than 500 days.

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