SURF CITY, NC (WWAY) — The Surf City Swing Bridge is one step closer to the end of its decades-long run. The NC Department of Transportation has decided where to build a new bridge to Topsail Island.
The project will replace the aging swing span bridge with a new structure the DOT says will improve traffic flow for both motorists and boaters. Federal, state and local officials met to review the remaining seven alternatives under study. After reviewing the environmental impacts and public comments associated with each alternative, Alternative 17 was selected as the location for the new bridge last month.
Alternative 17 is a fixed bridge that begins at the intersection of NC 50/NC 210 (Roland Avenue) with Little Kinston Road and Atkinson Point, heads south and crosses the Intracoastal Waterway about 1,000 feet south of the existing swing span bridge. As the new bridge crosses the Intracoastal Waterway, it arches to the south and then back north connecting to NC 50/NC 210 between Kinston Avenue and Roland Avenue.
At its highest point, the bridge is proposed to be 65 feet above the Intracoastal Waterway and will provide constant access for all boats and other vehicles. Once the new bridge is open to traffic, the existing swing span bridge will be removed.
NCDOT will continue to refine the design and explore ways to further reduce impacts. A meeting will be scheduled at a to present project details to the public. Right-of-way acquisition is scheduled to begin in 2015, with construction beginning in 2017.