The existing Walk Bridge (Bridge No. 04288R, MP 41.5), constructed in 1896, carries four railroad tracks of the Northeast Corridor and Metro-North Railroad's (MNR) New Haven Line and is critical to intercity and high-speed passenger rail service by MNR and Amtrak as well as freight rail service by CSX and Providence & Worcester Railroad.
The Walk Bridge currently carries approximately 200 trains and 125,000 passengers daily, and ridership is projected to double by 2065. The Walk Bridge is part of the busiest rail corridor in the nation, the Northeast Corridor, and is one of the oldest movable bridges on the Corridor.
It crosses the busy Norwalk River, a navigable waterway used by commercial and recreational marine traffic.
The 564-foot long, four span swing bridge is now in deteriorated condition having outlived its lifespan. It has experienced repeated operational failures, is vulnerable to damage from storm surges or high winds and requires replacement. Purpose and Need
The replacement of the Walk Bridge is uniquely challenging. It requires that construction be performed in the highly developed commercial and residential area of historic South Norwalk, while maintaining rail service and navigation on the Norwalk River.
To address these challenges, CTDOT is working closely with the City of Norwalk, stakeholders, neighbors and rail and maritime users to reduce and mitigate impacts. CTDOT is coordinating with MNR and Amtrak to develop a plan for maintaining rail service and with the U.S. Coast Guard and the Norwalk Harbor Management Commission on navigation on the river throughout construction. Coordination with the Maritime Aquarium, IMAX Theater, Lock and Ironworks Buildings and other neighbors is ongoing to address mitigation for noise and vibration impacts during construction. Get Involved
When complete, the new Walk Bridge will provide a vital link in the regional passenger and freight rail system improving performance, reliability and safety. The new bridge will also improve navigation on the Norwalk River, support continued economic growth, and provide community and environmental benefits.
In addition to replacing the existing bridge, elements of the bridge replacement project include: east and west approach embankment work and retaining walls, track work, catenary and signal work, removal of the existing high towers, relocation of high-voltage transmission lines, and a new fender system in the waterway.
The project also includes the rehabilitation of the MNR Bridge over Fort Point Street, a single-span structure—now in deteriorated condition—carrying four MNR railroad tracks. The goal is to provide a safe and reliable structure with structural capacities to accommodate the demand from passenger and freight equipment and meet today's industry standards.
FINALIZED ENVIRONMENTAL DOCUMENTS: September 2017
ANTICIPATED 60% DESIGN: Spring 2018
ANTICIPATED CONSTRUCTION START: 2019
ANTIPICIPATED CONSTRUCTION DURATION: 4-5 Years