Massachusetts Department of Transportation officials were joined by Federal Highway Administration representatives and elected officials last Friday to celebrate the groundbreaking of a major bridge replacement project that will benefit drivers and marine traffic alike from Quincy up to Boston.
MassDOT has begun the $244.6 million Fore River Bridge Replacement project, one of five megaprojects funded through the state's Accelerated Bridge Program. The new bridge replaces one closed in 2000 and demolished soon after, as well as a temporary one put in place to carry traffic from Quincy to Weymouth along Route 3A.
"This project is an important link for South Shore drivers, but it is also an important corridor for the industrial shipping uses that need this bridge and this channel just as much," said MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey in a statement. "The finished product will not only meet those needs, but will also have major upgrades to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists as well."
In an effort to open the bridge sooner, the state will use a design-build contract, combining the design and construction phases into one.
"Accelerating project delivery is about building long-lasting infrastructure in a way that completes work sooner and minimizes impact on the traveling public," said FHWA Deputy Administrator Greg Nadeau in a statement. "As one of the largest contracts in the state, the new Fore River Bridge will also support hundreds of jobs in the region."
MassDOT expects the bridge to be completed in 2016. Once open to traffic, the bridge is expected to service 32,000 drivers each day while also making it easier for ferries and freight to access the various ports in the area and the Fore River Shipyard.
Further information on the Fore River Bridge Replacement project is available at bit.ly/ForeRiver.