WASHINGTON, D.C. — Construction on a new Black River Bridge in Port Huron, Mich., can now begin thanks to a signed agreement between the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Michigan Department of Transportation for a $30 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grant, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced.
The money will go toward replacing the existing bridge, which was built in 1963, with a modern structure that will separate international and local traffic and improve the approaching I-94/I-69 corridors and interchanges. Total cost of the project is $78.6 million.
The bridge serves the local Port Huron community and carries 14 percent of the international trade between the United States and Canada. The new Black River Bridge will provide three dedicated lanes for eastbound local traffic, three dedicated lanes for eastbound international traffic headed to the Blue Water Bridge and Canada, and three westbound lanes to increase capacity and improve traffic operations. It also will offer new transportation options by including a 14-foot-wide bike/pedestrian crossing.
The new bridge will help the area’s future economic growth, Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez said. It will help reduce border crossing delays and improve commercial and passenger travel between the two countries.
The $30 million was awarded under the Recovery Act’s TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) program.