Gov. Phil Murphy, Department of Transportation Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti, NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin Corbett, Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin, and local elected officials celebrated a groundbreaking ceremony for construction on the Raritan River Bridge Replacement Project, which will replace the existing swing-span bridge that carries NJ TRANSIT’s North Jersey Coast Line trains over the Raritan River between Perth Amboy and South Amboy. The current bridge, originally built in 1908, suffered damage during Superstorm Sandy, and has experienced recurring maintenance issues. The new bridge will integrate resilient structural designs and materials to withstand future storm surges and be significantly less vulnerable to severe weather events.
“Smart infrastructure projects like this are at the heart of building a stronger, fairer, and more resilient post-COVID New Jersey,” said Governor Murphy. “To recapture our state’s mantle as the economic corridor to the nation, we need to ensure that we have the infrastructure in place to get residents to and from work, school, or play. Importantly, this project will also provide an economic stimulus at just the right time and bring with it more than 5,700 good-paying jobs.”
“The new lift span bridge over the Raritan River will sit higher above the water and is a more reliable design than the existing swing bridge that was built in 1908,” said Department of Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti. “It will be able to weather storms better and require less maintenance, meaning more reliable service for the customers that take the North Jersey Coast Line between the Shore and Manhattan.”
“This 112 year-old bridge is an essential rail link for communities all along NJ TRANSIT’s North Jersey Coast Line, carrying approximately 11,000 daily customers and connecting them to major job centers in Newark, Jersey City, and Manhattan,’’ said NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin Corbett. “The bridge was significantly damaged by Superstorm Sandy, which is why its replacement is critical, and why we will build it back stronger and more resilient than ever before. This is just one of many major, long-stalled capital projects now advancing through our recently introduced Five-Year Capital Plan.”
“The new Raritan River Bridge will replace a vital rail link for commuters going to work in Newark, Jersey City and Manhattan,” said Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin. “Damaged by Superstorm Sandy, this project will not only create construction jobs, but more importantly establish a more resilient bridge for decades to come. This is a big win for commuters and the local economies the rail line serves.”
The western alignment would place the new bridge farther away from the ocean to improve flood resilience and increase the design speed for trains on the bridge. The introduction of new mechanical and electrical systems would also provide for more reliable span operations, resulting in reduced maintenance costs. In addition, improved navigation at the lift span will significantly reduce the risk of vessel collision with the bridge’s pier protection systems.
Based on a study conducted by NJ TRANSIT in partnership with the Rutgers Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation, the one-time project investment has an estimated economic impact of approximately $1 billion and will support 5,740 jobs. The cost of the replacement project is estimated at $595-million, with $446-million paid for through a Federal Transit Administration grant.
For more information on the Raritan River Bridge Replacement, please click here.
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