Rail News – Coast Guard releases final environmental analysis of BNSF’s proposed North Dakota bridge project. For railway professionals



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Rail News: BNSF Rail

The US Coast Guard recently announced the availability of a final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for BNSF Railway Co.’s proposed replacement of its Missouri River Bridge between Bismarck and Mandan, North Dakota.

The EIA assesses the potential environmental effects of replacing the existing bridge or constructing a new bridge adjacent to the existing structure, such as implications for environmental control laws and impacts on flood plains, the Bismarck Water Reservoir and the Missouri River Natural Area.

The 1,525 foot long bridge rises 70 feet above the river. The BNSF has proposed to remove the existing 139-year-old structure, which is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places, Coast Guard officials said in a Federal Register notice. Due to the age and condition of the bridge, a 25 mph speed restriction is in place.

The final EIS identifies the preferred alternative as construction of a new bridge with 200 foot spans and piers 20 feet upstream, and removal of the existing structure. The Coast Guard plans to issue a decision record on the matter on Nov. 28.

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