NJ TRANSIT Raritan River Bridge Replacement Project

A Video Conversation

Video Conversation

Lenora Isaac – NJ TRANSIT Program Manager for Competitive Resilience Projects:

The replacement of the Raritan River Drawbridge is one of the five NJ TRANSIT Competitive Resilience projects. This project is being funded in part through a federal grant of almost $450 million.

The bridge was built in 1908 and spans the distance between Perth Amboy and South Amboy about a half mile from where the Raritan River meets the sea. The bridge provides the most important rail link for 17 of 20 North Jersey Coast Line communities to the job centers of Newark, Jersey City, and Manhattan. And, in the summer, it connects thousands of people to the beaches and attractions of the Jersey Shore.

For almost one hundred years the bridge had stood strong until Superstorm Sandy’s driving winds and relentless surge shifted the train track and wore away the piers upon which the bridge stands – similar to storms’ impacts on many of the North Jersey Coast Line bridges and crossings.

Meeting the challenges of future weather events required new thinking and a determination to building stronger.


Lisa Fanning – NJ TRANSIT Assistant Chief Engineer of Structures:

Designed to resist wind and surge, the new Raritan River Drawbridge will maintain the vital rail link upon which thousands have come to depend.

One design under consideration is a lift bridge—a crossing in which a section of the span is raised above the river to allow for passing commercial and recreational vessels. Another design under consideration is a swing span. It allows for river navigation by having a section of the span pivot perpendicular to the structure to create an opening. Each design has advantages, and the final selection will depend on which is most effective for rail and river traffic.

The project will require National Environmental Policy Act approval and will take approximately six years to complete. We’ll also be working closely with our partners at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Coast Guard.

Our goal is to build a new Raritan River Drawbridge with minimum impact to the environment and river traffic and the maximum benefit to our customers and stakeholders.


Lenora Isaac – NJ TRANSIT Program Manager for Competitive Resilience Projects:

It’s wonderful to be involved in this program. This is something that is going to stand the test of time and that you can look back on and say that you played a part in. So it’s vital to our customers, our company and to the region, so it’s very exciting to be involved in this program.