The Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) on Friday said it plans to build a $29 million overpass linking a terminal at the Port of Savannah to a nearby roadway in order to reduce the volume of terminal traffic through Savannah-area neighborhoods.

The overpass will give trucks leaving the port’s Ocean Terminal, which is undergoing renovations and an expansion scheduled for completion in 2026, a direct path to Route 17 and, from there, other highway and interstate connections.

When the terminal’s improvement are finished, it will be able to serve two large container ships at the same time and offer a capacity of two million TEU a year.

This most recent project will include the overpass and a roadway entrance to 17, the GPA said, and will be built according to Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) specifications. Once the project is complete in 2026, it will be handed over to the GDOT for maintenance and repair.

The authority said it also plans to build a dedicated exit ramp from Route 17 and a new truck-only entrance roadway into the 200-acre Ocean Terminal.

“This is a port project in the best interest of the community,” said Griff Lynch, GPA president and CEO. “We want to keep trucks off local neighborhood roads for safety and sustainability reasons.”

In December, the GDOT announced progress on another project that will impact the port – the $189 million US 17/SR 404 Spur Bridge Major Maintenance Project.

The department said the project is a short-term solution to the Talmadge Memorial/Savannah Bridge’s vertical clearance issues and that it could eventually opt to replace it.

For now, the GDOT has contracted with Kiewit Infrastructure South Co. to make improvements such as replacement of the bridge’s cables, bearings and joints and possible adjustment to the cable length to achieve a higher clearance so that larger ships are able to access the port.

Kiewit will be performing the work under a construction management/general contractor (CM/GC) – the GDOT’s first – and is assisting the department with design, scheduling, phasing, constructability and risk, along with designer of record Parsons Transportation Group.

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