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Federal Funding Application Filed For Sagamore Bridge Replacement  

Boston The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it has filed a joint application with the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) seeking $1.06 billion in grant funding through the Bridge Investment Program (BIP) Large Bridge Project Program for replacement of the Sagamore Bridge over the Cape Cod Canal.  If the application is approved, the $1.06 billion grant would help advance a phased replacement strategy for the Cape Cod bridges, beginning with $2.13 billion for the Sagamore Bridge. MassDOT will be responsible for administering the design, permitting and construction of the proposed improvements.  

“From day one, our administration has been laser focused on securing federal funding to rebuild both Cape Cod bridges,” said Governor Maura Healey. “This application for the Large Bridge Project Grant Program builds on our previous applications to strengthen our competitive standing. We are grateful to the Biden-Harris Administration and our Congressional delegation for making this funding available for states like Massachusetts to compete to improve our infrastructure and economies.” 

“The Healey-Driscoll Administration knows how important rebuilding the Cape Cod bridges is for our Cape communities and also the economic vitality of our entire state,” said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. “That’s why we’ve taken a whole-of-government approach to competing for federal funding opportunities like the Large Bridge Project Program. We are optimistic that we are on the strongest footing possible to bring these funds home to Massachusetts and get shovels in the ground.”

“MassDOT and the Army Corp’s joint grant application puts forth the immediate need to secure funding so that this critical project can advance into further design and construction,” said Transportation Secretary and CEO Monica Tibbits-Nutt. “There is no time to waste in securing the financial resources needed to replace this federally owned bridge, and we greatly appreciate any efforts that can be made on behalf of our application by members of the Congressional delegation and our federal partners.” 

"The Bridge Investment Program is a critical opportunity to secure federal funding for the replacement of the Cape Cod Bridges," said Director of Federal Funds and Infrastructure Quentin Palfrey. "We look forward to continuing our partnership with the Biden Administration and the Congressional delegation to move this project forward and compete for federal dollars that advance our infrastructure needs across Massachusetts." 

The Sagamore Bridge Project is Phase 1 of the Cape Cod Bridges Program addressing the aging Sagamore and Bourne Bridges and the surrounding roadway networks. The existing bridges are federally owned assets, operated by the USACE, and provide the only means of vehicular access across  

the Cape Cod Canal. The replacement project is essential for supporting the economy of Cape Cod and surrounding communities and ensuring safe and reliable travel for residents, workers, and millions of annual visitors. It presents a powerful opportunity to modernize the design to improve safety, mobility, and resiliency; increase economic vitality; and improve access through better pedestrian and bicycling infrastructure. It will also avoid the need for major rehabilitation which would require the full closure of the existing bridge. 

The principal challenge with the bridges over the Cape Cod Canal is that being nearly 90 years old, these bridges are approaching the end of their serviceable life and considered functionally obsolete and structurally deficient. 

Due to the narrow width of the existing bridges, most maintenance and repair activities require taking at least one travel lane out of service. Existing geometric deficiencies also influence poor traffic operations, congestion, and high crash rates, particularly during the peak travel season in the summer.  In addition, gaps and unsafe conditions exist for pedestrian and bicycle access across the bridges and between the Cape Cod Canal service roads and local roadways in the area. 

The Sagamore Bridge was selected to be replaced in advance of the Bourne Bridge as it carries substantially more traffic and would provide greater benefits sooner.  

The new Sagamore Bridge is scheduled to be built in such a manner so that traffic may continue to use the existing bridge while the new bridge is being constructed. As a result, the project will also include the reconstruction of portions of the roadways on either side of the proposed canal crossing. The scope of work includes building shared use paths in the project area. 

The modernized and reconfigured design will bring the bridge into a state of good repair, lower the long-term maintenance costs, address issues with traffic operations, improve safety by reducing crashes by as much as 48 percent, and preserve and enhance productivity through new direct jobs and other economic benefits. 

The Project would strengthen supply chains, spur economic development, and improve safety and daily life for an asset of both regional and national significance. The Project is critical to the Cape Cod economy, as virtually all freight goods cross over the two bridges. The bridges also enable cargo movement underneath the structures through the Cape Cod Canal. The bridges provide access to assets of national, state, and regional significance. The bridges are critical components to the Cape Cod Emergency Traffic Plan, a vital link for emergency response on Cape Cod and the islands, and significant to national security with access to the Joint Base Cape Cod. 

The Healey-Driscoll Administration has a robust transportation financing program state-wide, and the recent Capital Investment Plan (CIP) commits the state to provide the full $700 million state match for the Sagamore Bridge Project. This includes the programming of $262 million in cash flows expected to occur during state fiscal years 2024 through 2028 based on current construction schedule estimates, with the balance of the state’s $700 million contribution expected to occur after fiscal year 2028. These schedule and cash flow estimates will be adjusted as needed to address the timing and coordination of any federal participation. The state’s entire $700 million match is available without further legislative authorization required. 

The BIP Program provides an opportunity for Massachusetts to access the federal funding that is needed to replace this federal asset. This funding will allow Massachusetts to deliver on the vision of this project and its significant benefits to Cape Cod and the Islands and the state. 

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