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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Joe Fiordaliso
609-530-4280

RELEASE: July 15, 2004


NJDOT holds groundbreaking ceremony for the new

Route 1 & 9 Viaduct over the Elizabeth River

(Elizabeth) - NJDOT Commissioner Jack Lettiere officially kicked off construction of the new Route 1 & 9 Viaduct over the Elizabeth River in Elizabeth today.   The $72 million project will replace the existing, structurally deficient Elizabeth River Viaduct and will include various intersection improvements.  

Attending the groundbreaking were Senator Ray Lesniak, Assemblyman Neil Cohen, Assemblyman Joe Cryan and Mayor Chris Bollwage.   (See Graphics -pdf 489kb)

"In rebuilding this viaduct, New Jersey will realize significant improvements in safety and congestion relief," said Governor James E. McGreevey.   "This project will create hundreds of new jobs and is a prime example of why New Jersey's economic engine is outpacing the rest of the nation."

 

"This project is a great example of Governor McGreevey's Safety First and Fix-it-First policies," said Commissioner Lettiere.   "We are not only replacing the viaduct, we are also adding safety features to the intersection of Route 1 & 9 and East Jersey Avenue, rated as one of the top 10 highest accident sites in New Jersey, and Route 1 &9 from Hetfield Avenue to East Grand Street."

Reconstruction of the Route 1/9 Elizabeth River Viaduct represents a major Fix-it-First milestone for New Jersey.   With this groundbreaking, the NJDOT is fixing another of its high cost bridges.   These high-cost bridges are critical to the viability of New Jersey's transportation infrastructure, totaling nearly $2 billion in needs.  

 

"Route 1&9 in Elizabeth serves as one of this region's most critical arteries.   The corridor serves transportation in all its forms - air, rail, sea and highway," said U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg. "That is why I and the rest of the NJ delegation continue to fight in Washington for Federal funds to repair or replace each deficient crossing along this corridor!"

"Today's groundbreaking promises the construction of a wider and safer bridge over the Elizabeth River for Union County drivers. I am proud to have helped secure the funds that made this day possible and look forward to the completion of this important road project," said U.S. Senator Jon Corzine.''

The bridge, built in 1929 as part of the Route 1 extension, currently carries two northbound and southbound lanes without shoulders.   At that time, the Route 1 Extension was considered a pioneer 'super highway' that extended from the Bayway Circle to the Holland Tunnel.   The new structure will carry three lanes in each direction with shoulders in order to align with the existing highway sections.

"This project is a great example of smart growth in the city of Elizabeth and throughout the State of New Jersey.   It's proof that we can improve the quality of life and make our cities safer while helping our communities grow stronger," said Senator Ray Lesniak.

Final design for the bridge began in September 2002 by Tams-Earth Tech. Inc of Bloomfield.   The construction was awarded in June 2004 to George Harms Construction Company Inc. from Farmingdale.   Anticipated completion date is set for November of 2007.   The project won the Federal Highway Administration's 2004 Excellence in Right of Way award for "Streamlining and Integration."

"Not only is this project great for Elizabeth, it also serves as an example for the Governor's pledge to improve congestion relief for our motorists and safety for our pedestrians," said Assemblyman Neil Cohen.

The NJDOT partnered with the City of Elizabeth, the Chamber of Commerce and the State Historic Preservation Office.   As a result, the project will include aesthetic features such as decorative pylons, brick pavers, landscaping and commemorative plaques, which memorialize the existing historic structure.

 

 
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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  January 6, 2012