Kosciuszko Bridge gets blown up
The Kosciuszko Bridge collapsed in a cloud of smoke with a thunderous bang early Sunday morning.
The 78-year-old bridge was felled at 8 a.m. exactly when hundreds of small charges that had been placed on its joints were detonated.
Gravity then went to work and the bridge collapsed in a smokey show watched by Gov. Cuomo, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Department of
Transportation Chief Engineer Wahid Albert, and others from several boats in Newtown Creek.
“I am relieved, excited, relieved,” Gov. Cuomo said right after the detonation. “This is a great sign. It’s not just the bridge. This is in many ways symbolic of all the rebuilding we’re doing. The new LaGuardia, the new JFK, the new Penn Station. And it’s working. And we’re doing it fast, we’re doing it right, we’re doing it efficiently, which people don’t expect from government. So it feels good. It couldn’t have gone any better.”
“It’s really exciting,” Congresswoman Maloney said. “This is a fun way to start the day, isn’t it? I think it’s the only time we’ve ever
blown up a bridge.”
The bridge was initially expected to come down in July, but the work was delayed.
The first span of the new bridge opened in April. The demolition clears the way for construction of a second span.
“The span will Have two sets of suspension cables, two towers,” Cuomo said. “It gives a lace effect and it’s a very elegant-looking bridge.”
The old steel trusses will be taken apart and recycled. The bridge opened back in 1939. It was infamous for its traffic delays for decades before its demolition. The new Kosciuszko bridge is a big milestone in the neighborhood’s transition. “This is an area that was polluted from the industrial manufacturing economy,” Gov. Cuomo said.
“We’re cleaning it up, but I think the crown jewel is going to be that new Kosciuszko bridge.”