Coast Guard, DHS.
Notice of temporary deviation from regulations.
The Commander, First Coast Guard District, has issued a temporary deviation from the regulation governing the operation of the Route 36 Bridge, across the Shrewsbury River at mile 1.8, at Highlands, New Jersey. This deviation will allow the bridge to open on signal for all marine traffic once an hour on weekends and holidays from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. during the boating season.
This deviation is effective from May 23, 2009, through September 7, 2009.
Documents indicated in this preamble as being available in the docket are part of docket USCG-2009-0332 and are available Online at http://www.regulations.gov, selecting the Advanced Docket Search option on the right side of the screen, inserting USCG-2009-0332 in the Docket ID box, pressing Enter, and then clicking on the item in the Docket ID column. This material is also available for inspection or copying at the Docket Management Facility (M-30), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
If you have questions on this rule, call Gary Kassof, Project Officer, First Coast Guard District; telephone (212) 668-7021. If you have questions on viewing the docket, call Renee V. Wright, Program Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202-366-9826.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
The Route 36 Bridge has a vertical clearance in the closed position of 35 feet at mean high water and 39 feet at mean low water. The existing drawbridge operation regulations are listed at 33 CFR 117.755(a). The bridge presently opens on the hour and half hour between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. from May 15 through October 15, and on signal from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. From 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. the bridge opens on signal after a four-hour advance notice is given.
The Shrewsbury River is navigated predominantly by recreational power boats and sail boats of various sizes.
Currently only one lane of vehicular traffic is open northbound on the Route 36 Bridge due to the Highlands Bridge replacement project.
As a result of the vehicular travel lane closures traffic congestion has become a major concern to motorists and local officials. The nearby Gateway National Recreation Area, operated by the National Park Service, has been particularly impacted on weekends by traffic delays as a result of the bridge construction and drawbridge openings for vessel traffic.
The National Park Service, the New Jersey Department of Transportation, and local officials have made various adjustments to traffic control to help mitigate the vehicular traffic congestion; however, the traffic congestion on weekends in the afternoon continues to be a major safety concern when motorists are exiting the Sandy Hook area and the Gateway National Recreation Park.
As a result, the National Park Service and the New Jersey Department of Transportation requested a temporary deviation from the drawbridge operation regulations to help facilitate a balance between vehicular traffic and marine traffic during the summer boating season.
Under this temporary deviation, in effect from May 23, 2009 through September 7, 2009, the Route 36 Bridge at mile 1.8, across the Shrewsbury River, shall operate as follows:
Monday through Friday, the draw shall open on signal, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., on the hour and half hour only. From 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. the draw shall open on signal. From 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. the draw shall open on signal after at least a four-hour notice is given by calling the number posted at the bridge.
Saturday, Sunday and holidays, the draw shall open on signal from 7 a.m. through noon, on the hour and half hour. From noon through 8 p.m., the draw shall open on signal once an hour, on the hour only. From 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. the draw shall open on signal. From 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. the draw shall open on signal after at least a four-hour advance notice is given by calling the number posted at the bridge.
In accordance with 33 CFR 117.35(e), the bridge must return to its regular operating schedule immediately at the end of the designated time period. This deviation from the operating regulations is authorized under 33 CFR 117.35.Start Signature
Dated: May 13, 2009.
Bridge Program Manager, First Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. E9-12159 Filed 5-22-09; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-15-P