$809M Harbor Bridge project in Corpus Christie, TX underway

Dive Brief:

  • Construction is underway on the $809 million Corpus Christi, TX, Harbor Bridge replacement, according to the San Antonio Express-News
  • The new bridge, which will be the longest precast concrete cable-stayed bridge in the U.S., will feature a triangular configuration of white cables, six lanes with shoulders, a pedestrian walkway and high clearance so that it will be able to accommodate larger ships.
  • The joint venture of Flatiron/Dragados is building the Harbor Bridge under a designbuild contract, with estimated completion in 2020. The Texas Dept. of Transportation began plans for the new bridge after it inspected the current bridge and found it to be unsafe and in constant need of expensive maintenance. 

Dive Insight:

Officials held a ceremonial groundbreaking for the project last year, but construction work kicked off last week. The new bridge's increased clearance will also allow the Port of Corpus Christi to vie for deep-port business on the Gulf of Mexico. 

Ports around the country, including Bayonne, NJ, have launched projects over the last several years in order to prepare for the larger post-Panamax ships that are a result of the $5.4 billion expansion of the Panama Canal. The Bayonne project recently opened to drivers but will not be 100% complete until 2019.

Dragados is also part of the Tutor Perini-led joint venture at work on the Alaskan Way Viaduct in Seattle. The project, which was years behind schedule primarily because of a tunnel-boring machine breakdown (TBM), reached a milestone this week when Bertha, the TBM, completed its path under Seattle.

Dragados and Flatiron are also involved in another Tutor Perini-led project, the California High Speed Rail Authority's bullet train project that will connect Northern and Southern California in less than three hours. The contractors have claimed that mismanagement and failure on the part of the CHSRA to acquire the necessary land have increased their costs by $300 million and have requested that much in change orders. In June 2016, the CHSRA agreed to pay Tutor Perini almost $64 million in change orders to reimburse the contractor for delay-related expenses and to finance a $14 million acceleration of the schedule. 

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Filed Under: Infrastructure
Top image credit: Wikimedia