Vermont Governor Jim Douglas and New York State Governor David A. Paterson today broke ground on a new Lake Champlain Bridge spanning the lake between Crown Point, New York, and Addison, Vermont. The governors were joined at the site of the approach to the former bridge by state and local elected officials, local business leaders and community members to officially kick-off the start of construction of the new bridge. Those who live and work in the area surrounding the Lake Champlain Bridge share family, friends and business relationships on both sides of the lake, Governor Douglas said. The ease and timeliness of transportation across Lake Champlain is critical to their way of life and economy. Everyone involved in this bridge project should be commended for getting us to this point so quickly. Breaking ground on the new Lake Champlain Bridge is an important step in reconnecting our two states and restoring this critical link for commerce, tourism, employment, education and medical services, Governor Paterson said. I am proud to have worked closely with Governor Douglas to expedite this project, and commend the elected officials, community members and respective transportation officials for their efforts to work together toward a solution. The new bridge will be built at the same location as the previous structure in order to minimize historic and environmental impacts on the surrounding area. Construction will begin immediately and is expected to be completed in September 2011.The Modified Network Tied Arch Bridge will be a steel structure with an arch along the center span. Steel used will be treated for enhanced corrosion resistance. Multiple redundancies in the design make this bridge a safe structure that will have at least a 75-year service life. Bridge components are designed to be easily replaceable to reduce maintenance costs. Travel lanes will be 11 feet wide, with five-foot shoulders that will help accommodate larger trucks and farm vehicles, as well as provide ample room for bicyclists. Sidewalks will be built on both sides of the bridge.Flatiron Constructors, Inc. of Boulder, Colorado was awarded the contract to build the new bridge. While Flatiron will bring a core team of approximately a dozen managers, there will be many jobs for local workers with the appropriate qualifications.New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Acting Commissioner Stanley Gee said: Today signifies progress in reestablishing a permanent transportation link between New York and Vermont across Lake Champlain. During the last eight months, we have listened to the public and worked hard to deliver the design for a beautiful new bridge that pays full respect to both the historic and park setting of the surroundings while working at a record pace. We intend to keep up this pace during the construction of the new bridge.Vermont Agency of Transportation Secretary David Dill said: Design of the new bridge started almost immediately once it was determined that the old bridge could not be saved. The effort represents a massive undertaking by Vermont, New York, the federal government and the bridge s architect HNTB to design, engineer and permit the new bridge in only a few short months.The new bridge design was selected following significant outreach through public meetings and an online survey, which found strong community support for replacing the bridge with the Modified Network Tied Arch Bridge. This option was also supported by the bridge s Public Advisory Committee. Public preference was one of many factors considered as New York and Vermont chose the replacement bridge design and played a significant role in the final determination.The former Lake Champlain Bridge was closed last October after significant cracking was found in the structure s support piers and was demolished in December. (see demolition click HERE) New York and Vermont worked quickly to subsidize existing ferry service, and to establish free express bus service between New York and three major employers in Vermont, and shuttle bus service between several New York park-and-ride locations and the ferries.Additionally, a 24-hour, free, temporary ferry was opened in February, drastically cutting commuting time between New York and Vermont and effectively reestablishing commerce and emergency service along the corridor. Located immediately south of the former bridge, the temporary ferry, operated by the Lake Champlain Transportation Company, will continue to run until the new bridge is opened to traffic.In business since 1947, Flatiron has extensive experience building major interstate bridges all across the United States and in western Canada. The company rebuilt the Interstate 35W bridge in Minneapolis, Minnesota, following its tragic collapse in 2007. Flatiron has received numerous awards in recent years from some of the largest and most respected trade industries in the United States, including the Associated General Contractors of America, the American Council of Engineering Companies and the American Society of Civil Engineers.Source: Douglas’ office. 6.11.2010###
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KARACHI, Pakistan (CMC) – The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has confirmed a three-match Twenty20 series against West Indies set for Lahore in late November.The PCB and Cricket West Indies (CWI) had been in talks over the proposed series but PCB chairman Najam Sethi said the tour had been now finalised and a detailed scheduled would be announced shortly.“The agreement with the West Indies Cricket Board has been finalised and done and they have confirmed they will come to Lahore in November to play three T20 Internationals,” Sethi said in a television interview here.Cricket West Indies announced last month it was in discussions with the PCB over the staging of the series in Pakistan.However, CWI said the three matches would be “subject to the safe conclusion of the ICC World XI team’s three-match series in Lahore in September and affirmation of manageable security by the ICC-sponsored international security company overseeing the security arrangements of the World XI.”The World XI series against hosts Pakistan started Tuesday and wraps up tomorrow.Sethi said the series against West Indies represented a major breakthrough and would pave the way for the PCB to negotiate with other teams to tour Pakistan.West Indies faced Pakistan in a full series of Tests, ODIs and T20s last year in the United Arab Emirates before hosting the Asian side in the Caribbean earlier this year in a similar series.Sethi said Sri Lanka had also agreed to play a one-off T20 International in Lahore on October 29, though he was still holding out hope for two matches.He also revealed the PCB planned to hold discussions with Cricket South Africa over a short bilateral series in 2018.Once the Windies series comes to fruition, it will mark the first time a leading international side has toured Pakistan since 2009, when militants attacked a bus carrying the Sri Lanka team resulting in injury to several players and the death of several members of the security forces.Minnows Zimbabwe toured two years ago for limited overs matches but the series was not sanctioned by the International Cricket Council.Sethi said the PCB were hopeful of expanding the venues to other cities in the future.“Right now we are compelled to play only in Lahore but obviously with time we will schedule matches at other Test venues like Karachi, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi and Multan,” he noted.
Joe Schmidt has made two changes to the starting line-up for their final game of the RBS 6 Nations Championship against Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday.Luke Fitzgerald replaces Simon Zebo on the left wing and Cian Healy comes in for Jack McGrath at loose-head prop. Captain Paul O’Connell continues his second-row partnership with Devin Toner. McGrath takes a spot among the replacements which include: Sean Cronin, Martin Moore, Jack McGrath, Iain Henderson, Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan and Felix Jones. Healy’s inclusion is the only change to the front-five as both Mike Ross and Rory Best hold on to their places. Jamie Heaslip, Peter O’Mahony and Sean O’Brien will make up the back row. Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton are paired at half-back and the combination of Robbie Henshaw and Jared Payne link up for the sixth time in midfield. Fitzgerald joins Rob Kearney and Tommy Bowe in the back three. Ireland team:15. Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster)14. Tommy Bowe (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)13. Jared Payne (Ulster)12. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Connacht)11. Luke Fitzgerald (Blackrock/Leinster) 10. Johnny Sexton (Racing Metro)9. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster) 8. Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster)7. Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)6. Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster)5. Paul O’Connell (Young Munster/Munster) 4. Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster) 3. Mike Ross (Clontarf/Leinster)2. Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster)1. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster) Replacements16. Sean Cronin (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)17. Jack McGrath (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)18. Martin Moore (Lansdowne/Leinster)19. Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster)20. Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster)21. Eoin Reddan (Lansdowne/Leinster)22. Ian Madigan (Blackrock/Leinster)23. Felix Jones (Shannon/Munster) Meanwhile Scotland coach Vern Cotter has also made two changes. In the back-row Adam Ashe starts on the blind-side in place of Rob Harley while Ryan Grant takes over from Alasdair Dickinson in the front row.That game kicks-off at 2.30pm in Murrayfield.