A Bridge Floats Down the Hudson

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flickr user: Pro-Zak (by-nc)

(New York, NY - Collin Campbell, Transportation Nation)  A 350-foot bridge floated into New York harbor under the cover of night this morning. It’s the replacement span for the Willis Avenue Bridge and was built near Albany and sent down the river.

New York City’s Department of Transportation assembled the bridge in Coeymans, New York to avoid the impact that construction

would have had on the F.D.R. Drive and Major Deegan Expressway, which are both served by the Willis Avenue Bridge. The new bridge will eliminate tight curves on the existing span and will have wider lanes and pedestrian and bike paths. It will also have a solid surface -- New York City drivers know the Willis Avenue Bridge by the sound of its open grating deck hitting car tires.

“The new bridge will enhance mobility for some 70,000 motorists between the Bronx and Manhattan while making sure the Harlem River remains accessible to marine traffic,” said D.O.T. Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan.

The replacement bridge will spend the next few weeks in Bayonne, N.J. as final adjustments are made. In August, it’s scheduled to be towed up the East River and lifted into place. The new span is expected to open this fall.