City officials and Grade Construction, the building contractor, held a groundbreaking ceremony for the $2.6 million replacement 25th Street pedestrian bridge. The bridge is one of the crossings over the Light Rail in Bayonne. Others nearby are at 22nd Street and 30th Street.
The state’s i-bank, or infrastructure bank, is providing $2.15 million for the bridge. The rest of the funding comes from municipal bonds.
“Today is another great day in Bayonne, as we continue to work on quality-of-life improvements around the city,” Mayor James Davis said in a statement following the June 28 groundbreaking.
New bridge, new Bayonne?
The existing bridge was constructed in 1970. The push to replace it has been in the making since Mayor Joseph Doria’s administration.
“I am very excited to see this new bridge in place soon, as our residents have been hampered by the current, ill-designed and very steep bridge for the last several decades,” Davis said.
“The new bridge, which connects Prospect Avenue and Avenue E, will have elevator access for our residents with special needs and be much safer and friendly for our community as a whole,” Davis said.
The old bridge will be demolished before the new one is constructed in its place. Completion is expected in either late 2021 or early 2022.
“Construction on this new bridge should be completed in about six months,” Davis said. “During this upcoming construction the current bridge will be inaccessible. So anyone needing to cross over can use the two underpasses at 21st and 22nd Street or the two bridges at 30th and 32nd Streets.”
Fighting for state funding
At the groundbreaking, City Council President Sharon Ashe-Nadrowksi said the project was part of the rebuilding of Bayonne and connecting the east side and west side. She credited Second Ward City Councilman Sal Gullace and Assemblyman Nicholas Chiaravalloti for helping to secure funding.
“Throughout my time in Trenton I have fought for Bayonne and Jersey City to receive their fair share of funding for many different projects,” Chiaravalloti said. “While school funding was one of the biggest priorities, second to that would be funding for transportation. I am happy that Bayonne finally will be implementing the necessary improvements for the pedestrian bridges. I was happy to fight for over $500,000 to be included within the 2020 and 2021 Fiscal Budgets, as the residents of Bayonne deserve safe and secure access within their city.”
More bridges in the works
Davis said the city has been working closely with state officials on a new pedestrian bridge over Route 440 at Goldsborough Drive. He said he hopes to break ground before the end of 2021.
According to Davis, teams have agreed on a conceptual design for another pedestrian bridge over Route 440 near 22nd Street.
These two new bridges will correspond to the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail stations on both streets. These are not to be confused with the aforementioned pedestrian walkways, which cross only the Light Rail tracks. Funding for those bridges will come from private developers, state grants, and the city’s bonds.
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