BROWNSVILLE, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The Gateway International Bridge could look vastly different now that Cameron County is set to receive $130 million for its overhaul.
Construction will include “replacing the entirety of its structure,” county officials said Wednesday.
The federal funds, which come from the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will also pay to expand capacity for vehicles and pedestrians, thus “improving traffic flow and pedestrian safety, all while accommodating the region’s growing population and South Texas’ cross-border travelers,” the county stated in its news release on the project.
The Gateway International Bridge in Brownsville is one of the busiest pedestrian and non-commercial land port-of-entries in the Rio Grande Valley.
The bridge is owned by Cameron County, but the improvements will help the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s duties there.
“The modernized Gateway [International Bridge] will provide for a better flow of passenger and pedestrian traffic between downtown Brownsville and Matamoros,” said Tater Ortiz, CBP Port Director at the Brownsville Port of Entry.
The existing layout was last modernized during the Eisenhower administration, and its traffic today exceeds what the bridge was designed to process and accommodate, county officials said.
During the project development phase, federal, state and local officials must determine the scope and specifications for the project, which includes a community plan, project management plan, and conceptual design with cost assessments.
“This is great news,” Cameron County Judge Eddie Treviño said. “This momentous announcement includes years of advocacy from the Cameron County Commission, and we were pleased to have been included in the passage of this infrastructure legislation that will not only boost the region’s economy, bring local jobs, but will facilitate our area’s travel and ensure a safer and secure border.”