United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Feb 23, 2024
The consent of Congress is granted for the construction, maintenance, and operation of bridges and approaches thereto over the navigable waters of the United States, in accordance with the provisions of this subchapter.
The location and plans for such bridges shall be approved by the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating before construction is commenced, and, in approving the location and plans of any bridge, the Secretary may impose any specific conditions relating to the maintenance and operation of the structure which the Secretary may deem necessary in the interest of public navigation, and the conditions so imposed shall have the force of law. This subsection shall not apply to any bridge over waters which are not subject to the ebb and flow of the tide and which are not used and are not susceptible to use in their natural condition or by reasonable improvement as a means to transport interstate or foreign commerce.
Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (a) and (b), it shall be unlawful to construct or commence the construction of any privately owned highway toll bridge until the location and plans thereof shall also have been submitted to and approved by the highway department or departments of the State or States in which the bridge and its approaches are situated; and where such bridge shall be between two or more States and the highway departments thereof shall be unable to agree upon the location and plans therefor, or if they, or either of them, shall fail or refuse to act upon the location and plans submitted, such location and plans then shall be submitted to the Secretary of Transportation and, if approved by the Secretary of Transportation, approval by the highway departments shall not be required.