Governors break ground for new Champlain Bridge, ferry to keep running

first_imgVermont 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###last_img read more

Life in the Past Lane is June 3 at Luxemburg

first_imgLUXEMBURG, Wis. – Several restored and replica race cars will be on display under the grand­stand as part of Luxemburg Speedway’s Life In The Past Lane throwback night presented by Au­gie’s Bar and Grill on Friday, June 3.The night will already be special as the 2016 class of Hall of Fame inductees will be honored dur­ing a ceremony at intermission. They are former IMCA national and track Stock Car champion John Gregorich of Kewaunee and Luxemburg residents Roy Ihlenfeldt (former street stock cham­pion and IMCA Modified driver) and former driver and head groundskeeper at the Kewaunee County Fairgrounds Jerry Jonet.To add to the nostalgic buzz a number of restored racers will be on display. They include:Jonet’s own no. 13 1973 Ford Mustang, in the same condition as when it ran its last race at the third-mile, clay oval in 1978.Bucky Wagner’s no. 40 1933 Plymouth Coupe. The car is now owned by Gregg Herrmann.Gene Coleman’s restored no. 40 modified, a car that raced at Luxemburg in the mid-1970’s. The car is now owned by Mike Allard.Ken Markwardt’s restored no. 5 1961 Oldsmobile modified. The car is now owned by Brian Titel.Red BeDell’s replica no. 3 Ford Thunderbird Convertible. The car is owned by Bob Schampers.Al Snellenberger’s replica no. 00 coupe. The car is owned by Bob Schampers.George Giesen’s no. 7 Plymouth Coupe. The car is owned and maintained by Giesen and Bill Foth.Several former drivers will be on hand and some of those who were featured in local author Joe Verdegan’s book “Life In The Past Lane – a history of stock car racing in Northeast Wisconsin from 1950 to 1980.” They will be signing copies of the book which will be on sale.The book signing will take place under the grandstand from 5-7 p.m.A post race party will be held after the races at Augie’s Bar and Grill. The tavern is owned by for­mer local racer Augie Derenne.In addition, Life In The Past Lane night will feature the solo appearance of the dirt late models at the track in 2016. Tom Wagner of Sturgeon Bay will call the action over the P.A. beginning at 7 p.m.To go along with the throwback theme for the night will be slashed admission prices as $5 adult admission will be charged. Seniors will pay $4, with $3 for teenagers and kids 12 and under are free with a paid adult.“We’re looking to pack the stands that night and make it extra fun for everyone,” said promoter Eric Mahlik. “To throw in the fact you can catch a late model show for a mere $5, that’s a pretty good bargain for the fans.”last_img read more