Project Overview

A Local Concept Development (LCD) study of the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge S-32 was completed in 2013 through the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA), using federal funding in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), with Monmouth County as the project sponsor. Monmouth County continued to work closely with NJTPA, NJDOT and FHWA, in completing the Local Preliminary Engineering (LPE) phase in 2017 and the Final Design (FD) phase in 2020 as the project lead. The bridge replacement project has now been awarded for construction, and field activity began in Fall 2021.


Local Concept Development Phase

During the LCD phase, a well-defined Purpose and Need Statement was developed focusing on the need to improve safety and maintain the current crossing over the Shrewsbury River. Several sensible and practical conceptual alternatives were developed to meet the project goals and objectives. In coordination with the NJTPA, NJDOT, FHWA, local officials, community stakeholders, and permitting agencies, and upon completion of an alternatives analysis, a Preliminary Preferred Alternative (PPA) was recommended to replace the bridge with a new structure to the south of the existing bridge. Resolutions of Support were passed for the PPA by the Borough of Rumson, the Borough of Sea Bright and the Monmouth County Board of Commissioners (formerly known as Chosen Freeholders). Improvements to the Rumson Road (CR 520)/Ward Avenue intersection were also proposed along with improvements to better accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists at the Rumson Road (CR 520) and Ocean Avenue (NJ Route 36) intersection in the vicinity of the bridge.


Local Preliminary Engineering Phase

The LPE Phase involved performing engineering and environmental tasks required to obtain an approved National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) document for the project. Right-of-Way and environmental impacts for the proposed project were identified along with the needed construction permits. Meetings with local officials, community stakeholders, and the general public were also conducted during this LPE phase for the design development and environmental studies documentation. The PPA for the proposed improvements to the Rumson Road (CR 520) & Ward Avenue intersection was modified during this phase. Improvements to West Park were also proposed including a walkway connecting both sides of the park under the new bridge. Additional outreach meetings with affected property owners and business owners were also held during the LPE Phase.


Final Design Phase

The FD phase involved preparing the bridge and roadway intersection final design plans and construction contract documents including specifications and traffic management plans. During this phase, access modifications along with negotiation of needed property Right-of-Way (ROW) for construction of the project were completed and the needed environmental permits for construction were obtained. To inform and to encourage community involvement, two community stakeholders meetings were held. Final design plans, bridge improvements, and aesthetic elements for the new bridge, such as architectural treatments and streetscape design elements for Rumson Road intersections with Ward Avenue in Rumson and Ocean Avenue (Route 36) in Sea Bright, were presented at an online public information center meeting.


Construction Phase

The new bridge will be constructed alongside the existing bridge so traffic flow and pedestrian access will be maintained during the entire phase of construction. Once the new movable bridge is completed, traffic will shift to the new structure and the existing bridge will then be demolished.

Notifying the public about traffic patterns and potential delays during the bridge replacement and construction of roadway improvements will be important throughout the project duration. There will be continued community and public involvement efforts to maintain on-going awareness and communication through the construction activities needed for the bridge replacement and approach roadway intersection improvements in Rumson and in Sea Bright. The project website will provide traffic staging updates and inform the community and general public of outreach meetings and important project information.

Local Capital Project Delivery Process

1. Local Concept Development
  • Purpose & Need Statement
  • Data Collection & Environmental Screening Report
  • Selection of Preliminary Preferred Alternative
  • Concept Development Report
  • NEPA Classification
  • Create Design Communications Report
  • Initial Public Outreach & Involvement
2. Local Preliminary Engineering
  • Approved Design Exception Report
  • Cost Estimates (Final Design, ROW & Construction)
  • Approved Environmental Document
  • Approved Project Plan
  • Preliminary Engineering Report
  • Update Design Communications Report
  • Continued Public Outreach & Involvement
3. Final Design/ROW Acquisition
  • Construction Contract Documents & PS&E Package
  • Environmental Reevaluations
  • Environmental Permits
  • Acquisition on ROW
  • Update Design Communications Report
  • Continued Public Outreach & Involvement
4. Construction
  • Completed Construction
  • As-Built
  • Update & Finalize Design Communications Report
  • Close-out Documentation
  • Continued Public Outreach & Involvement
  • Project Kick-off (January 2018)
  • Data Collection (Early 2018): Review existing documentation, mapping and surveying, cultural resource report, etc.
  • Purpose and Needs Statement Developed (Early 2018)
  • Alternative Analysis (Mid 2018): Develop engineering alternatives and conduct impact assessment of alternatives
  • Selection of Preliminary Preferred Alternative (Late 2018)
  • Documentation (Late 2018/Early 2019): Prepare cost estimates, NEPA classification and documentation, preliminary engineering next steps, etc.
  • Draft Local Concept Development Report (Late 2018)
  • Final Local Concept Development Report (Late 2018)
Project Background

The existing bridge is in serious condition.  Several factors contribute to this assessment:

Load Capacity: The non-redundant design is fracture critical and existing components are overstressed under modern design loads. The bridge will soon need to be load posted.

Condition: The superstructure is in poor physical condition including moderate to severe corrosion of members, steel section losses, and section loss to rivet heads.  The substructure is in generally fair condition but has a high potential vulnerability to scour.  Most of the bridge electrical equipment is original and is nearing the end of its serviceable life.

Highway Safety: Parapets and railings do not meet current crash standards.  Approach guide rails and bridge end treatments do not meet current design standards.

Public Safety: There is no intercommunication system for local communication, fire alarm system, aircraft warning lights or lighting protection for the control and gate houses.

Seismic: The bridge is susceptible to seismic forces and does not meet current seismic design standards.

Environmental Process

NJTPA is administering the project, however the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides the funding.  Any transportation projects receiving Federal funding must also follow the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process.  The LCD Study must identify any environmental concerns and develop an environmental profile.  When analyzing alternatives, one looks to avoid or minimize environmental impacts and if that’s not possible then to provide mitigation.  The environmental resources include air, noise, hazardous or contaminated sites, parks, wetlands, water resources, social and economic impacts, and cultural resources such as historic structures and facilities.

The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Bureau of Environmental Resources (BEPR) oversees this aspect of the project in cooperation with NJTPA, Bergen County and Essex County, to coordinate with the permitting agencies such as NJDEP and NJSHPO (New Jersey State Historic Preservation Office) to develop a cohesive plan for proposed improvements.  The agencies look carefully at comments from the public and thus community involvement is an important part of environmental process and moving the project forward with consensus and environmental compliance.  The results of the environmental screening, which is in the project schedule, will be presented at the public meetings.  A good Purpose & Need Statement and documentation is important for the review agencies to work well with the project team in moving the project forward from the LCD Phase to design and construction.  Community involvement is an integral part of this process and the LCD Study.

Community Involvement

Monmouth County and the cooperating agencies of NJTPA and NJDOT, are committed to developing transportation improvements that best balance transportation needs, the environment, community concerns and cost.  As part of the Community Outreach effort, numerous meetings will be held to share project information, obtain input and broad based support for bridge improvements from the local officials, community stakeholders, and the general public.

The primary tasks of stakeholders during the LCD Study were to assist in the development of the Project Purpose and Need Statement, assist in the development of conceptual alternatives, identify possible fatal flaws, and to assist in the recommendation of the Preliminary Preferred Alternative (PPA) based on the Project Purpose and Need. Download Project Team List

LCD Project Schedule (Major Milestones)

Develop Project Purpose and Need Statement: May 2012

Development of Conceptual Alternatives: July 2012

Selection of Preliminary Preferred Alternative: November 2012

Submission of Draft Concept Development Report: February 2013

Completion of Concept Development Phase: April 2013

Develop Project Purpose and Need Statement: May 2012

Anticipated Community Involvement Schedule

Public Information Center for Purpose and Need Statement: February 2012

Obtain Stakeholder Input for Developed Alternatives: May/June 2012

Local Officials Meeting: September 2012

Public Information Center: October 2012

Local Officials Meeting: April 2013

Local Capital Project Delivery (LCPD) Program

The LCD Phase is the first phase for federally funded transportation improvement projects. The LCPD Program provides funding to NJTPA sub regions—the 15 city and county members of the NJTPA—to prepare proposed transportation projects for eventual construction with federal funding.

This preparation involves completing the multi-step Capital Project Delivery Process developed by NJDOT. This process is designed to streamline project development and provide a common and consistent framework for federally funded projects at the local, regional and state level.

Project Team

The Project Team is composed of members representing Somerset and Morris Counties, NJTPA, NJDOT, McCormick Taylor (the prime consultant design engineering firm), and other supporting consulting firms for engineering, environmental, cultural and community involvement support. See directory of project team staff and contact information below:

Richard Brundage, P.E.
North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority
Project Manager
Sascha Frimpong
North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority
Manager, Local Programs
Meghan Paccione (Primary Contact)
Morris County Senior Engineer
Brian Maurer (Primary Contact)
Somerset County Principal Bridge Engineer
Christopher Vitz
Morris County Director of Public Works & County Engineer
Roslyn Khurdan
Morris County Assistant County Engineer
Deval Desai
New Jersey Department of Transportation
Pamela Garrett
New Jersey Department of Transportation