It’s clearer – and safer – sailing these days for local motorists hitting the Bronx approach to the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge.
The $212 million Capital project to reconstruct the Bronx approach roadway at the bridge, providing drivers with wider 12-foot lanes and new safety shoulders, is now complete, with work finishing two months ahead of schedule, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced.
The project, which began in December 2008, included the reconstruction of 1,785-feet of elevated roadway at the Bronx end of the bridge as well as the construction of 15 new double-arch concrete piers beneath the bridge to support the wider 12-foot lanes and the new safety shoulders.
The bulk of the work was completed just before the July Fourth holiday, when the last piece of roadway work was finished by contractor Conti of New York, LLC.
Throughout the project, three traffic lanes were maintained during peak drive times to the Bronx in the morning and to Queens in the evening using a reversible lane.
“Not only did it finish early, all of the work was done while some 104,000 vehicles continued to use the bridge each day,” said Bridges and Tunnels chief engineer Joe Keane. “The improvements made to the 73-year-old bridge will go a long way in keeping it a current, vibrant artery in the regional transportation network for decades to come.”
“We appreciate our customers’ patience while this work was completed,” said Bronx-Whitestone General Manager Raymond Webb, “and ask for their continued understanding while work is done in the similar Queens approach Capital improvement project.”
The 42-month, $109 million reconstruction of the Queens approach to the bridge, was awarded jointly to E.E. Cruz, of Manhattan, and Tully Construction Co., of Queens in July 2011.
The work will include reconstruction and widening of the 1,010-foot-long Queens approach roadway and new safety shoulders. All work is currently being done beneath the roadway where new piers are being built to support the wider approach roadway.