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City leader wants more information on 'safety concerns' delaying New Harbor Bridge Project

Councilman Mike Pusley said he thinks motorists have put up with the traffic nightmare long enough.

Groundbreaking for the new Harbor Bridge took place back in 2016 when the goal was to finish the bridge by 2020. However, the project has run into a number problems over the years that have pushed back that estimated completion date.

Another potential delay to finishing the project came to light last week.

It was Friday when the Texas Department of Transportation halted construction work on the new Harbor Bridge Project over safety concerns regarding "certain elements" of the bridge structure. The halt only impacts construction regarding the new cable-stayed bridge portion of the project.

In the meantime, we reached out to City leaders to find their thoughts on this most recent delay.

"The construction pattern changes almost daily and you never know exactly which lane you're supposed to be in," City Councilmember Mike Pusley said. "I, like many other people, have ended up going toward Portland instead of downtown Corpus Christi at least once or twice. So it is an aggravation and it is dangerous."

Pusley said he thinks motorists have put up with the traffic nightmare long enough and he doesn't understand why TxDOT isn't sharing their concerns about safety on the bridge.

RELATED: TxDOT suspends part of developer's work on new Harbor Bridge

"They haven't shared any additional information with the City. I checked with the city manager and he said they haven't contacted him," Pusley said. "So I'm a little disappointed at that. I think the State of Texas owes the City of Corpus Christi and the people here in this community an explanation of what's going on."

3NEWS reached out to TxDOT for more information but they had no comment at the time. We also reached out to Flatiron-Dragados, the company building the new bridge, for comment. They have not yet responded.

Meanwhile, 3NEWS checked with business leaders on North Beach who are directly impacted by the construction, which has already closed one of the exit ramps to the area.

Jessie Gilbert, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Texas State Aquarium, said they often check with visitors on any problems they have getting to North Beach.

"If there are issues maybe we can help with signage along the route," Gilbert said. "But so far things, given the vastness of the construction project, people are actually moving quite well."

When TxDOT announced the delay last week, they cited safety concerns as the reason. TxDOT said they asked the developers to fix those design issues before continuing the work.

It is still unclear how long a delay this might be. 3NEWS will keep you updated as more information becomes available.

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