Bridges & Structures Division
The City of Chesapeake is home to over 90 bridges, including six drawbridges! The Bridges and Structures Division of Public Works is tasked with maintaining and operating most of these structures, including three of the drawbridges.
- Centerville Turnpike Bridge, Centerville Turnpike (City-Owned)
- Deep Creek Bridge, Moses Grandy Trail (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-Owned)
- Gilmerton Bridge, Military Highway (City-Owned)
- Great Bridge Bridge, Battlefield Boulevard (City-Owned)
- High Rise Bridge, I-64 (Virginia Department of Transportation-Owned)
- North Landing Bridge, Mt Pleasant Road (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-Owned)
- South Norfolk Jordan Bridge, replaced by a fixed span bridge of the same name, Poindexter Street (Privately-owned toll facility)
- Steel Bridge, replaced by the fixed span Veterans Bridge in December 2014, Dominion Boulevard (City-owned future toll facility)
- Restricted periods take place Monday through Friday except for federal holidays during the hours noted for each bridge. During restricted periods, bridges will open for cargo vessels and tug boats with a two-hour advance reservation. Pleasure craft may be let through on these reserved openings but there will not be any openings just for pleasure craft during restricted periods. All bridges will open on demand at any time for vessels carrying hazardous materials, government vessels or any vessel in an emergency situation. Local media is notified and disseminates information of reserved opening times during restricted hours.
- What is the average length of a bridge opening?
There are many variables that effect the exact time for a bridge closure; however, most do not exceed 10 minutes.
- Why does the bridge sometimes open during restricted rush hour periods?
During restricted rush hour periods, lifts are limited to commercial vessels with a 2-hour reservation. For security reasons, it is required that our bridge operators (the Public Works employee who controls the bridge opening) always allow vessels transporting hazardous materials to transit the waterway at any time without any reservations. These vessels are more commonly known as "red flag" vessels. The same policy also applies to Coast Guard, police, or any boat that has declared an emergency.
Please note that a restricted period of (for example) 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. means that the last opening for a waterway user may occur just before 7 a.m. (and run until all vessels waiting at the bridge have passed), but the next bridge opening will not begin until 9 a.m. (unless there is a commercial vessel with a two-hour advanced reservation or a vessel carrying hazardous materials). The City makes every effort to keep lifts within the designated lift times.
Bridge lifts for commercial vessels with two-hour advanced reservations during restricted rush hour periods are normally communicated to metro traffic radio and other media outlets.
- Why do pleasure craft sometimes pass during restricted rush hour periods?
If a pleasure craft is present at the bridge awaiting an opening when a commercial vessel with a two-hour advance reservation passes, the pleasure craft is permitted to transit also.