LONG BEACH (CBSLA) – A new bridge connecting Moncton to the world will officially open on Friday with a flyover of military planes, a boat parade and a procession of zero and low emission trucks.
The six-lane cable-stayed bridge replaces the Gerald Desmond Bridge and will be an important regional motorway connection and improve freight traffic.
The bridge, which has not yet been named, has two towers soaring 515 feet into the sky and will be the second tallest cable-stayed bridge in the United States, port officials said. It’s also bigger than the shorter, narrower Gerald Desmond Bridge, which currently carries 15% of all container goods to the US
“This bridge has the most advanced seismic technology of any structure in the country,” said Mario Cordero, General Manager of Moncton Harbor. “This bridge has a lifespan of 100 years. Yes, we have come a long way in terms of what this bridge is now, in terms of safety and efficiency. “
The bridge project began in 2013 to pave the way for the new structure, port officials said. The nearly three kilometer long bridge project valued at 1.47 billion US dollars also includes the eventual demolition of the existing Gerald Desmond Bridge.
Because of the ongoing pandemic, crowds were not allowed to watch the tape cutting, flyover, or parade of fire boats spraying water. However, a ceremony was broadcast on the Moncton Port, Gerald Desmond Bridge Replacement Project, and Moncton City websites, as well as Moncton public television channels, which port officials said gave the best views of all Friday activity.
The new bridge will remain closed to the public during the ceremony.
The routes to the Gerald Desmond Bridge will be closed from Friday afternoon to Monday morning so that the construction workers can change the lanes to the new cable-stayed bridge and open the new route.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All rights reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)