Engineering News-Record (ENR) recently recognized the Laredo Bridges I and II as the best government/public buildings in the Texas/Louisiana region. This was possible through the hard-work and collaboration between the General Services Administration, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Rep. Henry Cuellar.
Cuellar secured over $117 million for the completion of the Puente de Las Americas Bridge I and the Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge II expansion and modernization projects.
“Laredo is strategically located between two great powerhouses for commerce. Puente de Las Americas Bridge I and the Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge II are critical to our community and nation’s economic prosperity,” said Congressman Cuellar. “That is why, since 2014, I have been dedicated to funding the expansion and maintenance of these bridges. The rehabilitation and opening of Bridges I and II is one of the most important infrastructure projects undertaken in Texas.”
“I would like to thank CBP Director of Field Operations for the Laredo Field Office David Higgerson, Laredo Port of Entry Port Director Albert Flores, City of Laredo Mayor Pete Saenz, General Services Administration (GSA) Regional Administrator Robert “Bobby” Babcock and Regional Commissioner Giancarlo Brizzi, and former GSA Regional Administrator Sylvia Hernandez for their hard work and dedication on this project.”
The completion of the Bridge II Project will significantly ease pedestrian and vehicle traffic as well as upgrade the facility to increase efficiency and functionality.
Since 1995, bus traffic has increased 98% and bus passenger traffic by 233%. The Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge is ranked as one of the busiest crossings for bus passengers, processing 41,856 buses and 1,039,605 bus passengers in 2016. In the same year, Bridge II processed an additional 4,605,050 automobiles.
The renovations include a New Vehicle Processing Facility with new lanes, x-ray and waiting areas, bathrooms and inspection canopies, which will improve the flow and processing of bus and automobile traffic. Additional improvements include replaced utilities, electric, paving, walkways, curbs, gutters, storm drainage, exterior communications and information facilities, fire protection and alarm systems, site improvements, as well as a dedicated Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration area with permanent inspection facilities.