After several years of closure and detours, local residents can now drive across the San Benito River with the completion of the Hospital Road Bridge.
The San Benito County Board of Supervisors held a ribbon cutting ceremony on Dec. 10 to celebrate the grand reopening of the bridge. The crossing has been closed to the public since 2004.
Supervisor Bob Tiffany along with Assembly Member Robert Rivas were in attendance for some special remarks.
According to Tiffany, the Hospital Road Bridge Low Water Crossing Replacement Project was aimed to realign Hospital Road. It also replaced the low water crossing with a new bridge spanning across the San Benito River.
The goal is to provide safe public access for both existing and future residential or commercial properties, according to Tiffany. He said the new bridge will also improve emergency vehicle response times in the area.
The structure itself is a 620-foot-long, cast-in-place, post-tensioned box girder bridge that provides two 12-foot-wide travel lanes and two 5-foot-wide shoulders.
Tiffany said the project cost was approximately $11 million and funded under the Highway Bridge Program, which was administered by the Federal Highway Administration.
The project team included MNS Engineers Inc., Granite Construction and the County of San Benito Resource Management Agency.