Coles Island’s 2 aging bridges to be replaced starting next year

Provincial and federal governments to spend about $45M replacing bridges on Route 10

The Coles Island north and south bridges near Grand Lake will be replaced to keep the Route 10 corridor in good shape for forestry companies, the government said Wednesday. (Google Street View)

The provincial and federal governments will spend more than $22 million each to replace the Coles Island bridges that carry Route 10 traffic across the Canaan River.

Premier Brian Gallant said in the announcement Wednesday that forestry companies need the two new bridges in the community about 90 kilometres east of Fredericton.

Work will start in 2019 and is expected to take two to three years.

Both the north and south bridges are getting old and had to be closed for repairs in 2016. Each is now reduced to one lane to reduce weight.

In a news release, the province said Route 10 is a key corridor for the forest industry.

“The replacement of these key transportation links will ensure that New Brunswick companies can get their goods to market efficiently and remain competitive,” Gallant said in the release.

The federal government will contribute $22,062,000 from its national trade corridors fund, and the New Brunswick government will put in $22.8 million. The province announced a five-year provincewide bridge restoration program earlier this year.

An engineering survey has already been completed for the Coles Island bridges and geotechnical data has been collected. The preliminary design work is underway.

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