Lt. Governor Boyd K. Rutherford recently joined Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) Chairman and MDOT Secretary Greg Slater on a visit to the site of the new Nice/Middleton Bridge (US 301) project in southern Maryland.
Governor Larry Hogan has long been committed to replacing the nearly 80-year-old bridge, which has reached the end of its service life. When the new structure opens by early 2023, it will be a wider and safer link between Charles County, MD and King George County, VA. The new bridge’s four, 12-foot-wide lanes with 2-foot shoulders will double capacity and improve safety, enhancing emergency response and maintenance/inspection activities.
"It was great to have the chance to meet the men and women responsible for delivering world-class infrastructure like the New Nice/Middleton Bridge project," Lt. Governor Rutherford said. "We’re looking forward to joining our local, state and federal partners for an official groundbreaking ceremony when COVID-19 restrictions ease.”
The site visit was conducted with COVID-19 safety measures in place and via boat, with MDTA Chief Engineer Will Pines showing the existing structure before boarding one of the five cranes positioned in the Potomac River. The cranes, with booms of up to 200 feet, are responsible for driving piles weighing as much as 270,000 pounds into the river bottom to support the foundations of the new bridge. Pile driving operations began July 17 and are expected to be completed in summer 2021.
“It was an honor to have the lieutenant governor view the project and witness the hard work of all those involved,” Secretary Slater said. “His presence meant a lot to the Maryland Transportation Authority and all of the construction crews.”
MDTA Executive Director Jim Ports praised Pines, MDTA Director of Project Development Brian Wolfe, MDTA Acting Deputy Director of Construction Anthony Tabasco and Nice/Middleton Bridge Facilities Administrator Ben Gilmore for their hard work on the project.
“I can’t say enough about these four individuals, who are leading this megaproject effort for Charles County,” Executive Director Ports said.