$71 million Delaware Memorial Bridge resurfacing project finished, all lanes to reopen this month

After two years of disruptions, drivers will soon be able to travel over the newly resurfaced twin spans more smoothly.

Ribbon cutting on the bridge

Thomas Cook from the Delaware River Bay Authority and others, cutting the ribbon on the completion of the deck project for the Delaware Memorial Bridge. (Johnny Perez-Gonzalez/WHYY)

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After two years of lane closures, traffic delays, and inconveniences, a $71 million project to resurface the Delaware Memorial Bridge is now completed.

While this project required more lane closures than previous repair efforts, Delaware River and Bay Authority executive director Tom Cook said the replacement project was long overdue. The last comprehensive re-decking dates back to 1969.

Thomas Cook speaking at a podium
Thomas Cook, the Executive Director of the Delaware River Bay Authority, proudly announces the successful completion of the Delaware Memorial Bridge deck project. (Johnny Perez-Gonzalez/WHYY)

“This is the conclusion of a multi-year, $71 million dollar project to reject the northbound span of the Delaware Memorial Bridge. It’s on budget, and ahead of schedule,” said Cook. “The most comprehensive deck overlay in the span’s 72-year history and as we are making history today also as this is the largest application of the ultra-high-performance concrete in the whole United States.”

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The project is part of the ongoing effort to keep the decades-old twin spans in good condition. The New Jersey-bound bridge opened in 1951, and the Delaware-bound bridge opened in 1968. Some 18 million vehicles cross the bridge every year on average.

“With every construction project, our goal is to complete the necessary work safely while making sure traffic impacts to our customers are kept to a minimum. We want to thank our customers for their patience and understanding during all three phases of this reconstruction work on the bridge desk,” he said.

Cars driving on the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
The Delaware Memorial Bridge. (Johnny Perez-Gonzalez/WHYY)

The project is unique for its use of ultra-high-performance concrete.

“This is the first time that this material was used on a major bridge in the United States,” said Gilbert Brindley, director for UHPC Solutions North America. “It’s two inches thick, it’s the largest application of UHPC ever at nearly 5,000 cubic yards of material.”

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Now that the project is complete, all eight traffic lanes across the river will be open to traffic starting on Tuesday, November 21 at 6 a.m.

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