The Gerald Desmond Bridge, which is the primary route to the Port of Long Beach, has for years been in desperate need of repair. It got so bad a net was placed under the bridge to catch the concrete chunks that were breaking loose.
Finally after years of wrangling, the project broke ground in January 2013 and was originally expected to be completed by end of 2016. However, due to setbacks attributed to CalTrans delays in approving the design, the repositioning of oil wells and mis-mapped underground utility lines, the new bridge is slated to be finished by the end of 2017 or possibly even the beginning of 2018. As we have grown to expect with every major infrastructure project, there are cost overruns. The original budget for the project was $950M and is now $1.26B.
Rather than a traditional design-bid-build project, the Port of Long Beach chose a design-build project where the construction begins while 70% of the design is approved.
The Gerald Desmond Bridge Replacement Project is a joint effort of Caltrans and the Port of Long Beach, with funding contributions from the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro).