Markey Hosts Meeting on Replacement Funding for Canal Bridges

BOSTON – Replacing the Bourne and Sagamore Bridges was the focus of a meeting Friday in Boston between federal, state and local officials.

Senator Ed Markey hosted the session, which included representatives from Senator Elizabeth Warren’s and Congressman Bill Keating’s offices, the Cape and Islands Legislative Delegation, MassDOT, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Highway Administration.

Discussions focused on a joint funding solution for replacing the two bridges, which connect nearly 250,000 residents on the Cape and Islands to the rest of Massachusetts, and must serve as a critical evacuation route in the event of an emergency.

A recent draft Major Rehab Evaluation Report released by the Army Corps recommends replacing the Bourne and Sagamore Bridges.

The project has an estimated price tag of north of $1 billion.

“Replacing the Bourne and Sagamore Bridges in Cape Cod will be one of Massachusetts’s most important and pressing infrastructure projects,” Markey said.

“Working to identify and secure funding for the project will be my top priority. We will need to increase the annual budget of each agency involved, as well as create new grant programs that can benefit the Canal bridges.”

Markey said the replacement of the bridges would require a joint funding solution that would include commitments from both federal and state governments.

“Investing in infrastructure projects like the one to replace the Bourne and Sagamore Bridges — which serve as crucial evacuation routes for the Cape and Islands — is essential to our public safety and economic development,” Warren said.

Col. William Conde, District Engineer of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England, said the Army Corps looks forward to working with the Massachusetts delegation and other stakeholders and partners on a possible future project.

Jeffrey McEwen, Division Administrator for Massachusetts, Federal Highway Administration, said the Highway Administration’s role is to provide technical assistance on designs, cost estimates and planning.

“We have a long history of working with our state and federal partners in this capacity and look forward to providing ongoing technical support to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Massachusetts Department of Transportation,” McEwen said.

About Brian Merchant

Brian Merchant grew up in Central Massachusetts and now lives in South Dennis on the Cape. He has been part of the news team in the NewsCenter since the spring of 2014. He studied radio broadcasting at the University of Tennessee.
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