With a price tag of over $1.3 Billion, The Navigational Clearance Project is one of the largest public works projects in the NYC metro area. Known locally as the Bayonne Bridge raising, the project hasn’t garnered the attention that it deserves. Maybe that’s due to the nature of the project; it’s not that glamorous. The end goal is to increase the clearance below the bridge from 151 to 215 feet above the mean water level.
Why exactly are we investing so heavily in raising the bridge? Well, according to New York YIMBY, who published a great piece detailing the project, it’s the direct result of another mega-project 2,200 miles away. Finishing up later this year, the Panama Canal locks have undergone an expansion to accommodate new, larger container ships. As a result, the ports in the NYC area need to be able to service these ships. Currently, the Bayonne Bridge would prevent these new ships from reaching the Ports of Newark, Elizabeth and Staten Island’s Howland Hook.
It’s estimated that 12% of shipping containers entering the US pass under the Bayonne Bridge. Not raising it would have a devastating economic impact on the area.
Read about the history of the bridge and more details of the project on New York YIMBY: Bayonne Bridge Navigational Clearance: Raising The Road On America’s Largest Suspended Arch Bridge