STATEMENT BY DOT COMMISSIONER STEPHEN KORTA REGARDING THE “Q” BRIDGE PROJECT
“The Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) October 17th letter expressed concern that the “Q” Bridge and I-95 corridor project has expanded from an $850 million project to a $1.4 billion project since it was originally proposed. The scope and cost of the project have increased primarily due to design changes and additions requested by the City of New Haven and the regional council of governments.
New Haven’s desire to substantially expand the “Q” Corridor project beyond the FHWA’s approved “Q” Bridge plan requires additional steps in order to qualify for maximum federal funding. Federal law requires that these changes must go through a public participation and environmental review process as a condition of federal funding eligibility.
The Federal Highway Administration provides approximately 80 percent of the funding for highway projects. The State DOT cannot proceed with project elements or add-ons that do not meet federal funding eligibility requirements. FHWA’s letter outlined a process that can advance the project while addressing federal requirements of the add-ons. The DOT has invited Mayor DeStefano to a meeting and is currently awaiting his reply.”