For North Jersey Coast line riders: NJ Transit will replace the Raritan bridge that connects Perth and South Amboy. (NJ Transit)

SOUTH AMBOY, NJ — If you take the North Jersey Coast Line, this news may be of interest to you: NJ Transit announced Tuesday they will be replacing the aging Raritan River drawbridge. That bridge goes over the Raritan Bay and connects Perth Amboy and South Amboy.

That’s the bridge pictured above. NJ Transit says the existing bridge, colloquially known as River Draw, sustained significant damage during Superstorm Sandy. Replacing it will ensure many decades of safe, continuous use for train riders along the North Jersey Coast Line, the transit agency says.

The new bridge will be built on an alignment adjacent to the existing bridge, so the trains can keep running while the work is done.

Built in 1908, that bridge is the sole rail link for 17 of the 20 stations on the North Jersey Coast Line, which carries rides from the Jersey Shore to major employment centers of Newark, Jersey City, and Manhattan. The bridge carries almost 10,000 daily NJ Transit customers and moves two million tons of freight annually via Conrail.

This week, NJ Transit put out a request for contractors interested in bidding on the contract to build the replacement bridge.

A pre-special prequalification submittal conference has been scheduled for interested firms on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at NJ Transit Headquarters at One Penn Plaza East in Newark. Space for this conference is limited and interested firms may send no more than two representatives. All attendees are required to RSVP to Taishida Chapman, Managing Contract Specialist, via email at tchapman@njtransit.com.

Attendance at the pre-special prequalification submittal conference is highly recommended to ensure mutual understanding and a smooth application process. Questionnaires for special prequalification are available on the Bid Express website at https://bidexpress.com, and are due by 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 30, 2019.

“Continuing to make strategic capital investments in our infrastructure is critical to the long-term reliability of the transportation system. With the damage inflicted by Superstorm Sandy, the current River Draw has a reduced lifespan and requires replacement,” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Kevin Corbett. “This project aligns with our mission to build a robust and sustainable system that will better withstand the effects of extreme weather, while meeting the current and future transportation needs of our customers.”

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