Supersize container ships could begin calling at New York’s port by July, six months earlier than expected following the accelerated completion of a delayed $1.6 billion project to raise the roadway of the Bayonne Bridge.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who made the bridge-raising project a priority of his administration, announced the sped up timetable Tuesday morning standing on the docks of Maher Terminals in Elizabeth, N.J.
Calling the project “truly an engineering marvel,” Mr. Christie said the raising of the bridge span to 215 feet from 151 feet—while keeping the roadway open to traffic—would be a boon to the region’s economy and to consumers.
The Bayonne Bridge spans the Kill Van Kull, a winding tidal strait between Staten Island, N.Y., and New Jersey that ships must navigate to reach the region’s largest container terminals at Newark, N.J., and Elizabeth.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey was supposed to complete the project in time for an influx of supersize container ships following the opening of the newly widened Panama Canal last summer.
But in 2015, the agency pushed its estimated completion date to late 2017, citing harsh weather conditions and engineering difficulties.
The agency opened the new elevated roadway in February and is in the process of dismantling the original span. Mr. Christie said the port will be accessible to the larger class of ships by June 30. Read more WSJ.