- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie announced Tuesday that the "Raise the Roadway" portion of a $1.6 billion Bayonne Bridge renovation project will be complete six months earlier than expected, according to The Wall Street Journal.
- Crews completed the bridge's new elevated span in February, raising clearance from 151 feet to 215 feet, a height that will allow the new post-Panamax ships to reach the largest container terminals in the region. Crews are in the process of dismantling the old span and should be complete by July, at which time the channel can accommodate the larger ships.
- The bridge was originally scheduled for completion in 2016 to coincide with the opening of a new Panama Canal lane, the size of which has spurred use of the larger, post-Panamax ships. The entire Bayonne Bridge renovation is scheduled for completion in 2019.
In October 2015, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey officials announced that the the entire project wouldn't be finished until 2019. When the bridge — which connects Staten Island and New Jersey — is complete, it will have four, 12-foot-wide lanes, as well as a pedestrian-bike lane.
At the time, the authority said the Skanska Koch/Kiewit joint venture experienced delays due to severe winter weather conditions in 2014 and 2015. The contractor also had to make staging changes in order to lessen the impact of construction on the community and needed to implement increased safety measures so that traffic could continue during construction. The Port Authority said delays increased the total cost of the bridge by 20%, from $1.3 billion to $1.6 billion.
The Panama Canal expansion opened in June 2016, and ports on both coasts of the U.S. spent billions in preparations. While many American ports were ready, ports in Charleston, SC, and Savannah, GA, reported delays in the necessary dredging and construction.