DRBA Commission Adopts 2022 Capital Improvement Program

February 9, 2022

DRBA Commission Adopts 2022 Capital Improvement Program

Budgets Approximately $151 Million for Infrastructure Projects in 2022

NEW CASTLE, Del. –The Delaware River and Bay Authority (DRBA) Commissioners adopted the agency’s 2022 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) along with an Authority-wide Five-Year Strategic Plan for the agency’s airports and crossing facilities.  The 2022 CIP of $151.2 million is comprised of $126.9 million in Authority resources and $24.3 million in federal, state, and local grant funds.   The board action took place at the bi-state agency’s monthly meeting held in James Julian Boardroom at the DRBA Administrative Complex in New Castle, Delaware

According to DRBA Chairman James N. Hogan, these capital investments are essential to properly maintain and improve the agency’s crossing facilities.  “Millions of people rely on our network of transportation facilities to move products, visit family or commute to work on a daily basis,” Hogan said.  “As public stewards of some important regional transportation assets, the Authority will continue to make necessary and prudent investments at our bridge, ferry and airport facilities that will benefit our customers.” 

“The Delaware Memorial Bridge is a vital link in the I-95 north-south corridor and the Cape May – Lewes Ferry is integral to the local tourism economy of the Cape May and Sussex Counties,” added Vice Chairman Samuel E. Lathem.  “A reliable infrastructure network is vital for a strong, robust economy.  This CIP is an investment in our region’s future.”

The DRBA Five Year Strategic Plan, which contains nearly one hundred infrastructure projects at the Delaware Memorial Bridge (DMB), Cape May – Lewes Ferry (CMLF), and the agency’s five regional airport facilities, serves as a planning tool for directing resources to address the increasing demands associated with an aging infrastructure.  This plan is expected to cost approximately $610.5 million in Authority and grant funds and includes the following major projects:

Deck UHPC Overlay Program – DMB:  The deck of the New Jersey bound Span, I-295N, has reached the end of its serviceable life.  As a result of extensive evaluation a deck repair project has been recommended. The project includes removal of the top 2” of the existing deck slabs and replacement with an Ultra High-Performance Concrete (UHPC) overlay. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $18.8 million in 2022 and $50.5 million in the out years.  

Bridge Deck Repairs – DMB:  Both structures exhibit minor deck cracking and delamination as well as potholes due to age and heavy truck volumes. The project includes large lane-width concrete repairs to the bridge deck to maintain an appropriate level of service. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $650,000 in 2022 and $2.9 million in the out years. 

Ship Collision Protection ‐ DMB:  The existing tower fender system on the twin spans provides insufficient protection for current vessel traffic. This project provides a protection system meeting current standards and consists of eight 80-foot diameter dolphin structures, two at the approach of each tower pier.  This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $29.7 million in 2022 and $42.5 million in the out years. The project is partially funded in the amount of approximately $21.6 million by the US Department of Transportation. 

Bridge Steelwork Repairs ‐ DMB:  Due to age, environmental factors, and traffic volumes, steelwork repairs are necessary on both spans of the Delaware Memorial Bridge. This project programs miscellaneous steelwork repairs found to be necessary as a result of comprehensive annual inspections. These repairs are necessary to preserve the bridge's steelwork while maintaining safety and operational service levels. Work typically includes replacement of worn bearing assemblies, access platforms, maintenance of steel connections, installing new safety features, and other items. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $7.1 million in 2022 and $42 million in the out years.

Annual Bridge Painting Program – DMB:  As outlined in the annual bridge paint evaluation report, the coatings on certain segments of both structures are no longer performing as required. To ensure the structural steel is adequately protected, the coatings on these portions of the bridge are scheduled for complete removal to bare metal and replaced with a 3-layer protective overcoat system. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $8.7 million in 2022 and $27 million in the out years.  

Cape May Approach Roads Rehabilitation – CMLF:  Pavements at the terminal approach roads are deteriorating and improvements are necessary to maintain expected levels of service at the Cape May Terminal. The project proposes the design and construction for roadway reconfigurations at the terminal entrance, improvements to the approach roads, and the replacement of Cape May highway signage. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $3.3 million in 2022 and $1.5 million in the out years. The project is partially funded in the amount of approximately $2.44 million by the NJDOT.

CMLF Utility Corridor – Cape May and Lewes Terminals:    This project addresses the aging utility infrastructure at both ferry terminals.  It proposes the design and installation of new centralized utility corridors to allow for easier access and maintenance. The Cape May Terminal project, which is partially funded the amount of approximately $1.5 million by NJDOT, has an estimated DRBA cost of $2.3 million in 2022 and $3.8 million in the out years.  The Lewes Terminal portion has an estimated DRBA cost of $1.5 million in 2022 and $3.5 million in the out years

Annual Vessel Maintenance & Dry Docking – CMLF:   The project programs annual capital expenditures for the three (3) vessels, particularly in areas that preserve these assets and improve passenger safety and operational reliability. Planned projects include but are not limited to vessel shipyard dry-dockings, purchase of life saving equipment, seating replacements, systems efficiency upgrades, generator overhauls, and miscellaneous improvements. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $5.7 million in 2022 and $36.3 million in the out years. 

Motor Vessel Replacement Program – CMLF:  A marine master plan was completed in 2008 which recommended construction of new vessels primarily due to the age of the existing fleet. A new vessel is estimated to cost in the $40 million range. The plan supports an update of the old master plan, and then the design and replacement of the first of the three (3) existing vessels. Federal funding is anticipated for this project, but not committed at this time.  This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $1.5 million in 2022 and $59 million in the out years.

Multi-Tenant Building – Millville Airport:  Millville Airport has experienced increased development and business interest and there is little available space to accommodate demand. This project provides for the construction of a multi-tenant light industrial building to accommodate new tenancy requests. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $250,000 in 2022 and $3.3 million in the out years. 

Rehabilitate Taxiways "A", "C", and "G" – Millville Airport:  In accordance with the findings of the latest Pavement Management Study, Taxiways A, C, and G need repair.  The project programs the design and construction costs for these repairs to include pavement resurfacing, lighting, signage, and associated drainage improvements. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $25,000 in 2022 and $731,000 in the out years. The project is partially funded in the amount of approximately $6.5 million by the FAA. 

Rehabilitate 10-28 & Remove Taxiway E – Cape May Airport:  Results from the most recent pavement management study indicate that pavement on Runway 10-28 (the airport’s main runway) is deteriorating and needs restoration. Work will include pavement resurfacing, lighting, signage, and associated drainage improvements as well as the removal of an unnecessary connector taxiway. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $350,000 in the out years. The project is funded in the amount of approximately $5.8 million by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Multi‐Purpose Building (Hornet Road) – Cape May Airport:  The existing terminal building’s layout and condition are not conducive to future terminal functions and the facility is poorly located. Cape May County is investing significant funds in the development of a new airport entrance at Hornet Road and this project provides for the planning, design, and construction of a new terminal facility at the end of Hornet Road immediately adjacent to the airport’s FBO and fueling facilities. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $7.7 million in 2022. The project is cost shared in the amount of approximately $250,000 by the Cape May County.

Third Multi-Tenant Building – Cape May Airport:  Cape May Airport has experienced increased development and business interest. The Authority has constructed and leased two multi-tenant buildings, and there is demand for a third. The project provides for the construction of an additional multi-tenant light industrial building to accommodate new tenancy requests. This project has an estimated DRBA cost of $1.1 million in 2022 and $2.5 million in the out years. 

The entire planning document can be viewed on the Authority’s website, www.drba.net.

About the Delaware River and Bay Authority
The DRBA, a bi-state governmental agency created by Compact in 1962, owns and operates the Delaware Memorial Bridge, the Cape May- Lewes Ferry, and the Forts Ferry Crossing.  The DRBA also manages corporate and aviation properties through its economic development powers - two airports in New Jersey (Millville Airport and Cape May Airport) and three in Delaware (New Castle Airport, Civil Air Terminal and Delaware Airpark). All DRBA operating revenues are generated through the bridge, ferry and airport facilities.  For more information, visit www.drba.net.