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Engineering Work Begins on Bridge over Galien River in City of New Buffalo

Monday, October 29, 2018

For Immediate Release

October 29, 2018


Contact:       David Richards

                        (269) 469-1500


Engineering Work Begins on Bridge over Galien River in New Buffalo

Engineering work has begun to make improvements to the Galien River Bridge in New Buffalo connecting downtown to the community’s waterfront area.  The bridge is made up of three 66’ spans for an overall length of 198’ and was built almost 44 years ago in 1975.  The City Council awarded a contract to Abonmarche for design, bidding and construction oversight services at its October meeting. 

“Given the volatility in the construction market over the past few years, we are having the project designed and bid as three separate packages so that we can structure the planned work to deliver the best value to the community and our taxpayers” said New Buffalo Mayor Lou O’Donnell IV.  “Given the age of the bridge, it is nearing the end of its initial construction lifespan.  The planned work should extend the life of the bridge for another 20 years at only approximately 1/5 the cost compared to replacing the structure with a new bridge”. 

Given the bridge serves as the main connector for both cars and people between the community’s downtown and waterfront, it is a critical element of summer recreation activities in the community that translate into a significant amount of economic activity supporting local merchants and jobs.    

Engineering design work will be completed and the construction work put out for bid in December.  “We anticipate being able to make a contract award recommendation to the City Council in February with the work planned to begin in April 2019” stated Tony McGhee of Abonmarche.  

Given the criticality of the bridge to the local transportation network and access to the Galien River and Lake Michigan the project team will undertake a comprehensive communications strategy during construction to ensure residents and visitors know what to expect and minimize the impact of the project.