NATIONAL NEWS

Massachusetts trying to jump-start effort to replace Cape Cod bridges

Aug 16, 2023, 12:28 PM

FILE - A lone vehicle leaves Cape Cod over the usually busy Bourne Bridge, May 25, 2020, in Bourne,...

FILE - A lone vehicle leaves Cape Cod over the usually busy Bourne Bridge, May 25, 2020, in Bourne, Mass. Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey, who took office in January 2023, is hoping to jump-start the replacement of the two bridges connecting Cape Cod to the rest of the state by focusing first on federal dollars to replace the Sagamore Bridge before turning to the Bourne Bridge. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey is hoping to jump-start the replacement of the two bridges connecting Cape Cod to the rest of the state by focusing first on federal dollars to replace the Sagamore Bridge before turning to the Bourne Bridge.

The renewed effort comes as earlier attempts to win federal funds to replace the bridges have failed, including an application for $1.88 billion by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which operates the bridges.

Healey, who took office in January, said the administration is committed to replacing both bridges, but it is taking a new approach by focusing initially on the Sagamore Bridge.

“We are proud to be finalizing our application this month to compete for $1.45 billion in federal funds,” the Democrat said in a written statement. “This first phase will enable us to get shovels in the ground quickly on the Sagamore Bridge, lay the groundwork for rebuilding the Bourne Bridge, and move forward on the permitting and design of both bridges.”

The bridge work will create good-paying construction jobs and spur economic growth, Healey said. She pointed to three main reasons to start with the Sagamore Bridge — traffic, safety and economic impact.

Of the two bridges, the Sagamore experiences a higher volume of traffic and accounts for about 56% of crashes that occur on the bridges. A new Sagamore Bridge will have wider lanes, future rapid bus transit, and bicycle and pedestrian access across the Cape Cod Canal.

The new Bourne Bridge will also include a shared-use path for bicyclists and pedestrians.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the owner of the bridges. The Corps will maintain control of the existing bridges until the new bridges are completed, at which point control of the new structures will be transferred to the state.

The Corps has warned that if the bridges weren’t replaced within the next several years, one of the spans would have to be completely closed for 18 months for maintenance.

The bridges are often choked with traffic, especially during the summer tourist season.

Construction on both existing bridges began in 1933. Their narrower lanes no longer meet current highway standards.

There are no plans for tolls on the new bridges, officials have said.

National News

Associated Press

AP-NORC poll: About half of US adults approve of Trump’s conviction, but views of him remain stable

NEW YORK (AP) — About half of U.S. adults approve of Donald Trump’s recent felony conviction, according to a poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The survey shows some potential vulnerabilities, along with some signs of resilience in his support, as Trump tries to become the first American with a felony […]

49 minutes ago

Associated Press

Judge faces inquiry after Illinois attorney was kicked out of court and handcuffed to chair

CHICAGO (AP) — Cook County’s top judge has asked state regulators to review allegations that an attorney was handcuffed to a chair after a judge kicked him out of her courtroom. Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans referred misconduct allegations against Judge Kathy Flanagan to the state Judicial Inquiry Board on Friday, the Chicago Sun-Times […]

1 hour ago

jerry west...

Tim Reynolds, The Associated Press

Jerry West, a 3-time Hall of Fame selection and the NBA logo, dies at 86

Jerry West, a three-time Basketball Hall of Fame inductee whose silhouette is considered to be the basis of the NBA logo, died Wednesday morning.

1 hour ago

Associated Press

One of several South Dakota baseball players charged in rape case pleads guilty to lesser felony

MITCHELL, S.D. (AP) — One of the several former players on an American Legion baseball team in South Dakota charged last year with rape has pleaded guilty to a lesser felony. The 19-year-old former Mitchell player pleaded guilty to one count of accessory to a felony, according to court documents cited by KELO-TV on Tuesday. […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Alabama seeks more nitrogen executions, despite concern over the method

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama is seeking to carry out another nitrogen gas execution, months after the state became the first to put a person to death with the previously untested method. The attorney general’s office on Monday asked the Alabama Supreme Court to authorize an execution date for Carey Dale Grayson, who was convicted […]

14 hours ago

Associated Press

Silicon Valley-backed voter plan for new California city qualifies for November ballot

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A Silicon Valley-backed initiative to build a green city for up to 400,000 people in the San Francisco Bay Area has qualified for the Nov. 5 ballot, elections officials said Tuesday. Solano County’s registrar of voters said in a statement that the office verified a sufficient sampling of signatures. California Forever, […]

16 hours ago

Massachusetts trying to jump-start effort to replace Cape Cod bridges