Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and Governor Chris Christie today announced that the eastbound lane of the new Goethals Bridge will open to New Jersey-bound traffic late Sunday afternoon, June 11, 2017.
This event will follow closure of the original 89-year-old Goethals Bridge on Friday evening, June 9, 2017.
The old Goethals Bridge was completed in 1928. The new Goethals Bridge represents the first bridge built by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in more than 85 years.
The $1.5 billion project to build a cable-stayed crossing over the Arthur Kill between Staten Island, New York and Elizabeth, New Jersey represents a major upgrade to the region’s infrastructure system and a vast improvement for drivers.
The new Goethals Bridge also represents the first true surface transportation public-private partnership in the Northeast.
‘’This is the first major, new bridge erected in New Jersey in decades and it was long overdue, as anyone who navigated the old Goethals Bridge can attest,’’ Gov. Christie said. ‘’Drivers have been nervously gripping the steering wheel of their cars just to stay in the narrow lanes designed in the 1920s for the nation’s first generation of automobiles. The new twin-crossings, constructed next to the aging span, represent a critical infrastructure upgrade as well as a smarter approach to these types of projects. It was built under a major private-public partnership, which resulted in a swifter project completion than had we relied solely on the public sector.’’
“The new Goethals Bridge will streamline congestion, improve safety and create a stronger, more reliable transportation network across the entire New York metropolitan area,” Governor Cuomo said. “After decades of neglect, this administration is investing in New York’s future by rebuilding its infrastructure, supporting economic growth and prosperity for generations to come.”
The second of the new Goethals Bridge’s twin spans will open in 2018. In this final configuration, the new state-of-the-art bridge will have three 12-foot lanes along with 12-foot outer shoulders and five-foot inner shoulders on each of its twin spans. The second structure also will feature a 10-foot shared use path for bicyclists and pedestrians. The twin spans also preserve a corridor for future mass transit.
The complete bridge, with a total of 144 stay cables, each up to 450 feet long and 14 inches in diameter, will unite the roadways with four sets of soaring, V-shaped, 272-foot-tall concrete towers. It represents a significant improvement over the existing Goethals Bridge, now functionally obsolete with only four sub-standard 10-foot lanes, no shoulders and no shared-use pedestrian/bike path.
The Port Authority committed approximately $363 million of the $1.5 billion total cost, including prior planning, permitting, property acquisition, as well as design and engineering work. The agency will make another $150 million in payments to the developer upon completion of key milestones, including substantial bridge completion and the demolition of the old structure. Additional periodic payments will be made to the developer to cover capital and maintenance costs over the next 35 years, subject to deductions if managing agent, NYNJ Link, fails to meet certain performance criteria. The Port Authority will continue to operate the replacement bridge and retains control of the setting and collection of tolls.
A key part of the I-278 corridor, the Goethals Bridge is located near the Howland Hook Marine Terminal and provides access to airports, seaports and markets throughout the region. More than $33 billion in regional goods pass over the Goethals annually.
To ensure an alternate route for drivers while the original bridge is closed and the new Goethals Bridge opens, the Port Authority will keep its two other Staten Island bridges, the Bayonne Bridge and Outerbridge Crossing, open through the weekend.
More information about the Goethals Bridge Replacement Program, including on-site camera feeds, can be found at http://www.panynj.gov/bridges-tunnels/goethals-bridge-replacement.html.