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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
New England District
NOTICE OF 14-DAY EXTENSION to PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
AVAILABILITY OF DRAFT MAJOR REHABILITATION EVALUATION REPORT (MRER)
and DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT (EA)
CAPE COD CANAL HIGHWAY BRIDGES, BOURNE, MA
Interested parties are hereby notified under provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (implementing regulations in 40 CFR 1500-1508 and 33 CFR 230), that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), New England District, has prepared a draft Major Rehabilitation Evaluation Report (MRER) and accompanying draft Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Cape Cod Canal Highway Bridges, Cape Cod Canal Federal Navigation Project, Bourne, Massachusetts.
A Notice of Availability of the Draft MRER and Environmental Assessment was published to the New England District website on October 3, 2019. Written comments on this draft MRER and EA must now be received by November 15, 2019.
The MRER is a decision document which will provide the basis for the Corps to determine the most cost-effective, safe, and practicable alternative for providing critical access across the Cape Cod Canal, a Federal Navigation Project (FNP). The Cape Cod Canal Federal Navigation Project consists of a channel, anchorages and other improvements that have been constructed and maintained by the USACE. The draft MRER and accompanying EA evaluates alternatives to address component deficiencies of the Bourne and Sagamore bridges which impact their structural and operational reliability. The alternatives include, but are not limited to: continued repair and maintenance of the bridges as needed, perform a major rehabilitation, or replace both bridges with new structures. The MRER includes engineering, cost, economic, and environmental analyses. The Corps will address design and construction considerations and perform additional environmental analyses specific to the recommended plan in the next phase of the project.
Based upon recommendations of the MRER, the Corps proposes to replace both the Bourne and Sagamore bridges with new bridges consisting of a total of 4 travel lanes with 2 auxiliary lanes for each. New bridges would be built adjacent to the existing bridges and will incorporate modern safety design standards such as 12-ft. wide travel lanes; appropriate pedestrian and bicycle access with a separation barrier from vehicle lanes; a median between the two directions of vehicular travel; and shoulders to accommodate vehicle breakdowns. Bridge abutments would be located further north and south of their present locations on each side of the Canal in order to produce approach grades consistent with modern federal highway standards. The existing bridge piers are currently located within the Canal. New bridge piers would be relocated out of the water to the Canal shoreline.
The current bridges would remain open and continue to be inspected and maintained in a safe and reliable state while construction of the new bridges is underway. The current bridges would be dismantled after the new bridges have been opened to traffic. The actual bridge type, design specifications, and location of new bridges will be determined and evaluated during the design phase of the Cape Cod Canal Bridges Project, which is expected to occur after the MRER is approved.
The results, as found in the draft EA and Draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI), show that the proposed action would not have a significant adverse impact on the environment. At the conclusion of the public comment period, it is anticipated a FONSI will be signed for the proposed action. An Environmental Impact Statement therefore, is not necessary to implement the Proposed Action for this phase of the Canal bridges project.
Additional information may be obtained from Mr. Craig Martin, Programs & Civil Project Management Branch, Programs & Project Management Division, at the return address above or by email at nae-pn-navAusace.army.mil. Copies of the Draft MRER and Draft EA are available online at https://www.capecodcanalbridgesstudy.com/ under the "Documents" tab. Additional copies can be obtained by contacting the Public Affairs Office, 696 Virginia Rd, Concord MA 01742-2751.
Comments are invited from all interested parties and must be submitted via the project website: www.CapeCodCanalBridgesStudy.com or to Craig Martin at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, 696 Virginia Road, Concord, MA 01742-2751, no later than November 15, 2019.
To view/download the subject public notice, please access it on project website listed above.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
696 Virginia Rd.
Concord, MA 01742-2751