N.J.’s $1B Pulaski Skyway project reaches milestone with return of 2-way traffic

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Updated Jul 6, 2018
Northbound lanes on the 85-year-old Pulaski Skyway have reopened.Northbound lanes on the 85-year-old Pulaski Skyway have reopened.

Two-way traffic is now moving again on the Pulaski Skyway between Newark and Jersey City, New Jersey after northbound lanes were closed in 2014 as part of a massive $1 billion rehab on the series of bridges over the Passaic and Hackensack rivers.

The project on the 3.5-mile, 85-year-old Skyway has been broken down into 11 contracts, with three contracts now completed. The New Jersey Department of Transportation says three contracts are under construction; one is expected to be awarded this summer, and four more are in final design.

The completed contracts involved removing concrete encasement around steel beams on the eastern end of the Skyway and replacing the deck. Contractors hit some delays on the deck project. They faced harsh weather and the steel was more deteriorated than expected when the deck was removed, according to NJDOT.

The Skyway also consists of 118 spans, only two of which are the same. So framing plans were unique to each span, and few of the 3,500 deck panels were the same, NJDOT says.

“To get a sense of the enormity of the work just completed, the redecking contracts included the replacement of 44 floor beams, removal and installation of tens of thousands of stringers (steel beams) and 3,500 deck panels, and the replacement of more than 15 million pounds of structural steel,” NJDOT reports.

The project also included 12 new overhead sign boards, 284 new LED lights and upgraded guardrail.

Though more work remains to be done, NJDOT says the rest of the project will not impact traffic as much as the first phases. The entire project is scheduled to be completed in 2024.

Future work includes replacing Kearny and Newark ramps, repairing steel and substructure, resurfacing some portions of Route 1&9 in Newark, repairing the piers and structural steel of all truss members, replacing rocker bents, and repainting the structure.