USACE is conducting a multi-year Major Rehabilitation Evaluation (MRE) Study of the Bourne and Sagamore Highway Bridges over the Cape Cod Canal Federal Navigation Project. The MRE Study will determine whether major rehabilitation or replacement of either or both bridges will provide the most reliable, fiscally responsible solution for the future. The existing bridges were constructed 83 years ago and require frequent maintenance, which is costly and causes significant impact to traffic crossing the Cape Cod Canal. As part of the standard operation and maintenance scheduling for the Bourne and Sagamore Highway Bridges, USACE identifies a 5-year maintenance schedule and cost for repairs. When the maintenance construction costs are anticipated to exceed $20M or 2 years to complete, a Major Rehabilitation Evaluation Report (MRER) is required to assess a 50 year time frame for operation and maintenance and to evaluate alternatives that continue to serve the mission of the federal works project.
The MRER will evaluate the current conditions of the bridges and what alternatives are feasible. The MRER is based on structural engineering analysis of the bridges, the cost estimates for rehabilitation and/or replacement alternatives, environmental effects of the alternatives, and the economic benefits of the alternatives. The ultimate objective is to identify the most cost effective plan to maintain access across the Canal.
As part of this MRER evaluation process, USACE will be developing an Environmental Assessment (EA) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to examine the potential impacts associated with the base conditions and alternatives examined within the MRER.