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January 9, 2013 11:45 AM, EST
Port of Long Beach Begins Work on $1 Billion Bridge Replacement Project
Rendering of new bridge — Courtesy Port of Long Beach

The Port of Long Beach, Calif., announced it has begun construction on a $1 billion project to replace its main bridge, the 45-year-old Gerald Desmond Bridge.

The project is expected to take four years, and the new bridge will raise the clearance over the channel to 200 feet from the current 155 feet, allowing the world’s largest ships to pass below it.

The bridge will feature two 50-story-high towers and will be one of the tallest cable-stayed bridges in the country, the port said.

The existing bridge, which carries about 15% of all goods coming into the United States, will remain open during construction. The project is part of the port’s $4.5 billion planned improvements.