Photo Courtesy of LIRO
Gov. Cuomo has ordered an acceleration of the construction on Metropolitan Transportation Authority bridges and tunnels, including on the Robert F. Kennedy Triboro Bridge in Queens.
By Forum Staff
Anticipating added summer road traffic due to Amtrak emergency repair work, Gov. Andrew Cuomo this week ordered an acceleration of the construction on Metropolitan Transportation Authority bridges and tunnels, including two in Queens.
The “aggressive schedule” ensures major construction projects will be completed by July 8 to reduce vehicular congestion during Amtrak’s extended period of widespread reduced service.
“Our top priority is ensuring all New Yorkers can get where they need to go as quickly and easily as possible this summer and we’re taking every conceivable step to prepare for Amtrak’s summer of hell,” Cuomo said. “By aggressively expediting construction we are taking action to ease commutes and provide New Yorkers with peace of mind.”
Some of the construction projects that will be accelerated for completion by July 8, 2017:
- Tunnel Sandy Reconstruction: Accelerated construction of the north tube from Aug. 31 to July 8. Motorists will experience full use of both tubes during daytime hours with suspension of daytime weekend closures starting July 8, which will significantly improve customer travel time.
- Manhattan Downtown Exit Plaza Rehabilitation: Completion by July 4. The entire ramp will be re-opened to operate at its full two-lane capacity for customers using the downtown Manhattan exit ramp of the QMT. One of the two ramp lanes has been closed since Sept. 16, 2016.
Robert F. Kennedy Triboro Bridge
- ORT Construction: Cashless Tolling Go Live date accelerated two and a half months, from Aug. 31 to June 15; improves traffic flow by allowing customers to travel without stopping to pay a toll.
- New 125th Street Manhattan on-bound ramp to RFK Bridge: Accelerated ramp reconstruction by six months from Dec. 31 to June 30. Project restores full capacity of the ramp with both lanes opened, thereby improving traffic flow from Manhattan to Queens/Bronx. One of the two lanes has been closed since Feb. 29, 2016.
- Reconstruction of Queens to Manhattan Ramp: Construction completion by July 8. One lane has been closed to accommodate ramp reconstruction since July 23, 2016. Restoring this ramp to its full capacity will improve traffic flow and ease congestion in this heavily traveled corridor.
- Queens & Bronx Bound Plaza Reconstruction: Construction completion accelerated three months, from September 2017 to June 30, 2017. Project will improve roadway alignment and traffic flow.
- Bronx & Manhattan Toll Plaza Demolition: Accelerated demolition of toll booths to July 8 from original Sept. 30.
Verrazano Narrows Bridge
- ORT Construction: Cashless Tolling Go Live date accelerated by nearly five months, from Nov. 30 to July 8. This will improve traffic flow by allowing customers to travel without stopping to pay a toll.
- New Bus/HOV Lane on Upper Level: Project completion accelerated five months, from November to the week of June 19, allowing for the opening of the Brooklyn bound BUS HOV lane; will result in a continuous 14-mile Bus/HOV lane from Staten Island to Lower Manhattan – improving traffic flow on the Staten Island and Gowanus Expressways – providing up to 15 minutes reduction in travel time for over 30,000 daily commuters. Adding this seventh lane increases roadway capacity by 16 percent, according to the MTA.
- New BUS/HOV Ramp: Completed one month early, the ramp will link the Verrazano Bridge to the Gowanus Expressway with the new Bus/HOV ramp.