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Route 132 in Sharon to Remain Closed Another Two Weeks

Sharon — A portion of Route 132 is likely to remain closed to through-traffic for another two weeks because of more extensive work than anticipated required to repair the road, which was initially damaged by Tropical Storm Irene two years ago.

Sharon Selectboard Chairman Paul Haskell on Wednesday said roadwork just north of the Interstate 89 interchange will likely continue until Sept. 27 because the ledge was deeper under the roadbed than engineers suspected.

Local and state officials closed the road to all but local traffic between the interstate and Beaver Meadow Road last Friday night for road work expected to take about a week.

But because the ledge is 11 feet below the roadbed, rather than the anticipated 7 feet, more elaborate support work is required.

“We’re going to build a retaining wall along a stretch of about 70 feet through that one section,” Haskell said. “In order to do that now, we’re going to have to take most of the one lane that was remaining in order to be able to work in that section.

Haskell said Route 132 remains open from the interstate to just past Steele Road for local traffic, a key point for the newly reopened Idlewood restaurant, which has suffered a dramatic loss of business because customers incorrectly believe they can’t get to the eatery.

Idlewood co-owner Alex Roupinian said the 75-seat restaurant, which reopened in July and is open Tuesday through Saturday, saw only two customers last Saturday night.

Roupinian said electronic sign boards about the Route 132 road closure near the interstate may be giving motorists the incorrect impression that they can’t get to the restaurant from the interstate, when they in fact can do so from Route 132. Motorists heading south from Strafford on Route 132 do have to take a detour to get to Idlewood or the interstate, with Fay Brook Road and Brook Road being the primary route.

“The restaurant is open, and if people would just come a little farther, that would be great,” said Roupinian, who noted that only six customers were there Tuesday night, compared to a normal 25 to 30.

Haskell also sympathized with the restaurant’s plight and noted “they are open and up there and doing great stuff ... it’s good to have somebody like that back in Sharon.”

Though through traffic should be restored in about two weeks, Haskell said another stretch of Route 132 between Beaver Meadow Road and Cross Road will be closed for about a week around Oct. 1 to install a permanent culvert to replace one “blown out” by Irene flooding in August 2011.

“Local traffic will be able to access the side roads,” Haskell said.

Town officials said the entire Route 132 reconstruction is costing about $929,000, with the town’s share being about 10 percent.

John P. Gregg can be reached at jgregg@vnews.com or 603-727-3217.