DOT previews 65th Street bridge reconstruction

March 4, 2021 Jaime DeJesus
DOT previews 65th Street bridge reconstruction
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Department of Transportation representatives gave a preview Feb. 25 of reconstruction plans for the bridge on Fifth Avenue and 65th Street. The Zoom meeting included members of Community Boards 7 and 10, between which the bridge is located.

DOT said the 106-year-old bridge – which had its last roadway rehabilitation in 1962 – has crumbling concrete, cracks in its abutments and underside and needs to be seismically retrofitted.

Demolition and reconstruction will begin in October and completion of the four-phase project will take 38 months, with 24 of them affecting traffic at the site.

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Two-way traffic will be maintained during construction and one sidewalk will remain open at all times, but left turns will be eliminated at the intersection and traffic agents will be present.

Parking will not be permitted on the bridge during the length of the project and weekend work will be done on the N train line.

David Estrada, executive director of the Sunset Park Business Improvement District, voiced concerns about the project – particularly regarding the large car dealerships on each side of the bridge.

“They routinely have excessively big car carriers rolling through on these blocks,” Estrada said. “I’m not just concerned about [traffic] agents but persistent signage well before the construction zone. Very large vehicle traffic has to be re-routed at 60th Street or you’re going to get these trucks trying to make turns on these small residential streets and crushing cars on the corner.”

Josephine Beckmann, district manager of CB 10, said the guaranteed presence of traffic agents is significant.

“Sixty-fifth Street is a high-crash corridor and it will be a priority, so I’m sure between all of us, if it’s funded, they will be there,” Beckmann said.

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