Cape Looks for Bridge Funding in Federal Infrastructure Package
Cape Cod officials joined U.S. Senator Ed Markey at a park overlooking the Sagamore Bridge on Wednesday to celebrate Senate passage of the federal infrastructure package, which he said will help fund the more than $1 billion project to replace the Bourne and Sagamore bridges.
“One of our goals is going to be, for once and for all, to get the design correct, so people can feel confident that the traffic issues that we've seen historically are going to be dealt with,” he said.
Markey said the money will come from several government sources. The package includes funding for evacuation routes; for state bridge projects; and for the Army Corps of Engineers, which owns the Cape bridges.
To become law, the package still needs to pass the House and receive President Biden’s signature.
Under the Senate bill, the Army Corps would receive $11.6 billion for construction projects and have the opportunity to compete for other funding for the Cape bridge project, Markey said.
The new CEO of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, Paul Niedzwiecki, said the bridges are critical to Cape Cod’s economy.
“You know, when Bourne sneezes, Provincetown catches a cold,” he said. “When you have refrigerator trucks coming over, and they're delayed making their deliveries down in Provincetown, that's an economic issue. So we more than welcome the replacement of these two bridges.”
Congressman Bill Keating and several state legislators spoke during the press conference at the Sagamore Recreation Area in Bourne.
John Atilano, commander of the Army Corps New England District, said he can’t comment on pending legislation but wanted to express the district’s appreciation.
“We appreciate that some of our aging infrastructure is in the discussion for the infrastructure bill, and we understand the challenges that Congress is facing while making hard decisions with limited resources,” he said.
Markey said he hopes the new bridges will be open by 2026.