On Thursday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced the completion of the new Goethals Bridge. The $1.5 billion cable-stayed bridge replaces its old steel truss cantilever predecessor, with more lanes and shoulders that make it easier for emergency vehicles to respond to accidents.
The new bridge, which connects Staten Island to Elizabeth, N.J., features twin spans that each have three 12-foot wide lanes, 12-foot outer shoulders, and five-foot inner shoulders. It also boasts “smart bridge” technology, which essentially means that the bridge’s structures are continuously monitored by sensors at “critical points.”
The Port Authority was responsible for fronting $500 million of the project’s $1.5 billion cost and financed the rest with private partner NYNJ Link, who will lease the bridge to the Port Authority over the next 35 years, reports the Wall Street Journal. Once contract is up and the balance is paid off, NYNJ Link will return the bridge to the Port Authority.
Last June, the eastbound span of the new bridge opened and has been used to accommodate two lanes of traffic in each direction while the westbound span was under construction. The westbound span is now complete and will open on Monday morning, making it the first new bridge opened by the Port Authority since 1931.
“The completion and opening of the second span of the Goethals Bridge project represents one of the most important infrastructure enhancements undertaken in the New Jersey-New York metro region in more than eight decades,” said New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. “These critical improvements will ease congestion and provide a safer driving environment for daily commuters and the more than 32 million travelers who use the bridge annually.”
In the meantime, the New Jersey-bound lanes of the Goethals Bridge will be closed this weekend, beginning Friday at 9 p.m. until Monday morning at 4 a.m., to accommodate construction work that will allow the bridge’s westbound span to make its debut on Monday morning. The bridge’s New York-bound lanes will not be impacted.
- New Goethals Bridge Set to Open to Traffic on Monday [Wall Street Journal]