The Mantoloking Bridge will live to see traffic once again.
The county-owned bridge, which crosses Barnegat Bay and connects Brick with Mantoloking, was the subject of initial reports during Hurricane Sandy's landfall that indicated it suffered heavy damage, but tests have shown it survived and remains structurally sound.
"The structure of the bridge has not been compromised," said Brick Mayor Stephen C. Acropolis.
Acropolis said engineers have tested the bridge and it is safe to handle all vehicular traffic, including heavy construction vehicles.
Some repairs will be needed, however, including some reconstruction on the bottom of the bridge where it hit land.
At some point over the next week to 10 days, Acropolis said, the bridge will close for approximately four days while those repairs are made.
The issue for motorists, however, is that Herbert Street in Mantoloking – where the bridge emptied out on the barrier island side – as well as Route 35 no longer exist as they did before the storm struck.
Acropolis said crews are now preparing the area on the east side of the bridge for a paved road to be built.
A gravel road was constructed where Route 35 was once located since the state highway was ripped up when the ocean met the bay and formed a new inlet near the bridge's eastern base.