New Goethals Bridge Project Progressing

Apr 06, 2017

The Goethals Bridge Replacement Project has been underway since May of 2014.  This massive undertaking will modernize this critical piece of the New York / New Jersey metropolitan area infrastructure.  Named after Major General George W. Goethals, builder of the Panama Canal and the first consulting engineer of the Port Authority of NY & NJ, the bridge was the agency’s first bi-state development project.  Opened in 1928, the span was originally built to accommodate the sizable increase in the amount of interstate auto traffic following World War I.  Linking Elizabeth, NJ and Staten Island, NY, the existing bridge has four 10’ wide lanes - inadequate for the size of the typical twenty-first century truck. The new bridge will have six 12’ wide lanes with shoulders, allowing it to better handle the larger vehicles and the high volume of traffic.

Beach Electric Co. has been contracted by the joint venture Kiewit – Weeks – Massman to install electrical power distribution and power backup for both the East and West bound sides of the bridge up to mid river.  The nearly $10 million project will include roadway lighting, aesthetic bridge lighting, tower lighting, aviation and navigation lighting, approach ramp roadway lighting and lightning protection. In total, our portion of the job will take over two years to complete.

The new bridge will also incorporate a full array of “smart bridge” technology.  Beach Electric will install an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) including a new fiber optic network and sub-systems such as SCADA, CCTV, dynamic message system (DMS) and roadway weather information systems (RWIS).  The technology is capable of collecting environmental data such as wind speed, visibility and pavement temperature to relay to motorists as they traverse the structure.  The new Traffic Detection System will use sensors to alert the public to traffic incidents.

Numerous enhanced safety measures include continuous electronic monitoring of the structure through a network of sensors placed at critical points. The sensors can spot potentially serious problems before they might be apparent to a human inspector as well as help to determine how the bridge will withstand heavy traffic, severe weather conditions and other potentially hazardous situations.  The advancements are staggering.

The Beach Electric team is proud to be a part of this historic project.  The replacement of a functionally obsolete bridge with a structure that includes state-of-the-art smart bridge technology will benefit the public for decades to come.  

Beach Electric would like to acknowledge the developer, NYNJ Link and Port Authority of NY and NJ.  We thank the following for their ongoing assistance on the project:  Steve Allen, Ian Kodes, Keith Barfoot, Josh Pick, Kendall Watts and the rest of the MASS Electric Team.