The new Bonner Bridge officially connected from
end to end on Monday, August 27, after construction crews installed the
final girders that linked the 2.8-mile-long bridge into one continual
Though there is still work remaining to complete
the new Bonner Bridge, the project is nevertheless on track for the
bridge to open by the end of 2018.
Using high-durability concrete, stainless
reinforcing steel, and other modern engineering features, the new
Bonner Bridge will have a 100-year life span. The high-rise portion of
the bridge is 3,500 feet long with seven navigational spans, averaging
about 300 feet in width each, which will also provide more options for
navigation under the bridge. Comparatively, the arched high rise of the
existing bridge provides for only one navigational span with an opening
of 130 feet.
The new bridge will also feature 12-foot-wide
travel lanes and 8-foot-wide shoulders, which will improve safety
across the board. (The current Bonner Bridge has no shoulders.)
Once the new bridge is complete, crews will get
to work removing the “old” Bonner Bridge just east of the new site,
leaving behind 1,000 feet of the existing structure at the southern
end. This portion of the old bridge will remain in place and will be
open for pedestrians and fishermen, and the rail will be updated to be
more pedestrian-friendly and safer.
The project in its entirety is set to be
completed by September 2019, which includes about 10 months for the
demolition of the original bridge. The project began with a
groundbreaking in March of 2016, and has more or less remained on
schedule throughout the duration of the construction.