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The New Jersey Department of Transportation recently announced $47.3 million in grant funding will be distributed statewide to help with local bridge maintenance projects.
The 41 Local Bridge Fund grants that were announced April 9 will support each of New Jersey’s 21 counties. The grant program, administered by NJDOT’s Local Aid and Economic Development division, is supported by the state’s Transportation Trust Fund.
“The Local Bridge Fund program is part of NJDOT’s Commitment to Communities [initiative] to improve the quality of life in New Jersey,” NJDOT Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti said. “By providing grants to improve county-owned bridges throughout the state, we are helping local governments make critical infrastructure investments that improve the reliability of our statewide transportation network.”
The funding is meant to support repair, reconstruction and replacement efforts. According to the American Road and Transportation Builders Association, 7.8% of New Jersey’s bridges are classified as structurally deficient.
The largest county grant went to Monmouth County, which received two awards totaling $5.7 million. Both grants will support bridge reconstruction projects. Monmouth County is located on the coast in central New Jersey, across the Raritan Bay from Staten Island.
Mercer County, which encompasses Trenton, received two grants totaling $3.1 million. Passaic County, located in north New Jersey, also received two grants totaling just more than $3 million.
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The Local Bridge Fund grants represent one of a few programs NJDOT uses to bolster local infrastructure projects. The agency also administers the Local Freight Impact Fund, which allows cities and counties to make improvements to truck routes. NJDOT announced March 18 that $30.1 million had been awarded to counties and municipalities through the Local Freight Impact Fund.
NJDOT also sustains the Municipal Aid Grant Program, which provides cities and towns with funds for transportation-related projects. Gov. Phil Murphy announced $161 million had been distributed to hundreds of cities and towns through this program Nov. 26.
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