TITUSVILLE, Fla. – Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), NASA, and Space Florida celebrated the milestone completion of a momentous improvement project on the NASA Causeway Bridge with leaders and legislators cutting the ribbon to open the new eastbound bridge on June 9, 2023 - over 100 days ahead of schedule.
The opening of the newly built bridge is the first step in the project. A second bridge – for westbound traffic – will now be built with an expected opening date of early 2026. The old causeway bridge, built in 1964, will soon be demolished. Traffic will now be temporarily switched to the newly opened bridge for two-way traffic over the causeway until the new westbound bridge is complete.
“The new NASA Causeway Bridge is evidence of our Administration’s focus on improving Florida’s infrastructure,” said Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez. “This year, the Space Coast is projected to host close to 100 launches, further cementing Florida’s position as the Launch Capital of the World. With surging demand across the commercial aerospace industry, we are committed to improving infrastructure to accommodate space payloads making their trek to launch pads. This NASA Causeway Bridge will meet the demands that ensure Florida remains the global hub for all aerospace activity.”
With a taller and wider fixed bridge, spanning 4,025 feet over the Indian River Lagoon and rising 65 feet above the water, the new NASA Causeway Bridge will enhance the accessibility of this corridor, which includes Kennedy Space Center and the Cape Canaveral Spaceport. The new bridges are wider, double high-rise bridges with clearance for waterway traffic, eliminating the need for a drawbridge. The project, which covers two miles, started in late 2021.
“This project is a perfect example of FDOT’s commitment to serving and working with our local communities to meet their vision for the area and their transportation needs. These bridges not only improve the transportation for spacecrafts and payloads but also increase safety and connectivity for motorists driving on top of it and marine traffic using the waterway below it,” said FDOT Secretary Jared W. Perdue, P.E. “Raising the bridge equips this crucial high-tech corridor with robust and resilient infrastructure that will support growth and evolving needs for decades to come.”
The NASA Causeway Bridge demonstrates Florida’s commitment to the aerospace industry and the more than 150,000 jobs the business supports.
“To harness the full potential of the space industry, it is critical that we invest in robust infrastructure that supports the demands of modern space activities,” said Space Florida President and CEO Frank DiBello. “The new NASA Causeway Bridge serves as a powerful enabler, facilitating the flow of resources, talent, and ideas between the mainland and the spaceport complex.”
“The road we are standing on today is more than a bridge – it is a critical artery that supplies the lifeblood to our mission. Kennedy’s mission is to provide continuous access to space from Earth’s premier spaceport using creativity and innovation, and in many ways, this bridge is a representation of that spirit,” said NASA’s Kennedy Space Center Director Janet Petro. “Creativity and innovation have been paramount since the inception of this project, allowing us to partner with multiple government agencies and work hand in hand with our commercial partners to bring this project to fruition.”
Through a partnership between FDOT, NASA, and Space Florida, the $126 million project used a combination of state and federal funding. For more information on this project, please visit the project webpage.
For images of the event, please see the attached photos.