News Releases

Senator Murray’s Statement on Re-Opening of I-5 Bridge in Skagit County

Jun 18 2013

Temporary bridge will re-open traffic along crucial corridor

Permanent replacement of collapsed bridge section scheduled to open in the fall

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chairman of the Senate Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, released the following statement on tomorrow’s re-opening of the I-5 bridge in Skagit County, WA.

“Families and businesses throughout Washington state rely on I-5 every day, so the re-opening of this bridge is fantastic news for local businesses and our economy.

“From the moment the bridge collapsed, I’ve been working closely with Governor Inslee and federal and state transportation officials to help the communities that have been affected, and I will continue working hard to ensure the permanent replacement is quickly put in place.

“Unfortunately, the collapse of the I-5 bridge can’t be viewed as an isolated incident.  This tragedy was a stern wake-up call to the need to re-invest in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure. Across the country, aging roads, bridges, and highways are in desperate need of repair, so we must do more to fund important transportation projects and use federal resources wisely.”

Last week, Senator Murray led the Washington delegation in announcing that the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) has made $15.6 million in emergency funds available to support the temporary and permanent fixes for the I-5 bridge.  That funding represents the maximum amount of eligible federal funds for each structure.

Last Thursday, Senator Murray chaired a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation – which oversees the federal transportation budget - on the need for federal investment in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure. See full video of the hearing, including her questioning of top officials from the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Government Accountability Office.

Earlier this year, as Chair of the Senate Budget Committee, Senator Murray passed a budget through the Senate for the first time in four years.  It makes significant investments in transportation infrastructure through tax-credit bonds and $10 billion to start an infrastructure bank for important projects.  Details on the Senate Budget.