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Bridge details: Possible roads, bike paths, and land takings for the new Cape Cod bridges

The latest plans for the new Bourne and Sagamore bridges were on view Monday at an open house in Bourne hosted by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.

The public had the opportunity to view maps and digital simulations of the options for ramps, bicycle and pedestrian paths, and local roads near the bridges. Those are some of the biggest variables remaining for the $4.5 billion dollar project, and the state has not finalized its choices.

At the Sagamore Bridge, options include a connector from Sandwich Road to Cranberry Highway, similar to the Mid-Cape Connector, only east of the bridge. That idea came from a member of the public, said Andrew Clarke, a highway designer with Stantec consulting on the project.

“We hadn't considered it, because the existing Route 6 is here,” he said, pointing to where the Sagamore Bridge makes landfall near the former Christmas Tree Shops. “Once we move Route 6 across to the west, and all of this is open, then actually, we can make these connections. And so, that was a direct result of a member of the public coming in and saying what they thought, and what their experience is.”

At the Bourne Bridge, one option on the south side shows roundabouts at the bridge ramps and at Upper Cape Tech.

Roland Depradine, of Sagamore Beach, said he was surprised to see that.

"I heard something about rotaries, and we just got rid of them,” he said. “And I can't believe we might be putting some of them back.

But the roundabouts are smaller in diameter than the Bourne rotary.

“So the speeds that you can travel around those roundabouts are much lower than you could around a larger circle,” said Alex Siu, a consultant with HNTB.

Traffic signals are still being considered for those intersections, too, she said.

Bob Dwyer attended on behalf of the Pocasset Village Association, of which he is president. He said the group wants to make sure drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians have good access to the places they need to go.

“You probably know that Market Basket is the only supermarket in the whole town,” he said. “And a number of people from the Buzzards Bay and Sagamore side will come over. So, we want to make sure there's easy-on, easy-off access so that they can get over there.”

He said based on the drawings, it appears the bike path may be a high priority. But Dwyer said the state is missing an opportunity to eliminate some of the places where Route 28 drivers north of the Otis Rotary have to make a U-turn to cross the Bourne Bridge.

Improvements to road connections could benefit local businesses, said Jeanne Azarovitz, a member of the Bourne Planning Board who is running for the Select Board.

She looked at a map that shows the anticipated construction zone around the south side of the Sagamore Bridge, where the state is likely to take some homes.

“It's intense,” she said. “And it means a lot for the businesses that are in that way as well. ... It's going to be hard to let go of your home, you know, if you've lived there forever and tolerated the traffic so far. But it's something that has to be done.”

John DeLeire, director of the Right of Way Bureau at the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, was on hand to answer questions. But he couldn’t say how wide the new rights-of-way will be, or which homes are likely to be taken.

“I really wish I could answer those questions,” he said. “Unfortunately, right now, the design hasn't been finalized yet, the construction methods haven't been finalized yet, and some of the environmental permitting haven't been done yet. So we don't really know the answers to those questions right now.”

The map of the construction zone for the south side of the Sagamore Bridge shows cranes directly on top of places where homes and businesses are now. And digital images of options for the finished roads around the Sagamore show what appears to be grass and trees east of Eleanor Avenue, where homes are now.

The state is still assembling federal funding for the bridges. News could come this spring or summer on a federal grant of more than $1 billion, which would complete the more than $2 billion necessary for the first bridge, the Sagamore.

If all goes according to plan, construction on the Sagamore could start in late 2027 or early 2028.

The Sagamore is tentatively scheduled to open in 2034, and the Bourne Bridge a year later.

Jennette Barnes is a reporter and producer. Named a Master Reporter by the New England Society of News Editors, she brings more than 20 years of news experience to CAI.