A major reconstruction project is coming to the 79th Street Bridge, an overpass over the Gowanus Expressway, according to the New York State Department of Transportation, the agency responsible for the work.
Preliminary work is expected to begin within the next few weeks, officials said. The project is scheduled for completion in December, State DOT said.
The 79th Street overpass spans the Gowanus Expressway between Fort Hamilton Parkway and Seventh Avenue. It includes both a roadway and a sidewalk for pedestrians.
The reconstruction project will include a complete replacement of the bridge deck and repairs to the bridge’s steel substructure, as well as sidewalk improvements and the installation of new lampposts with energy-efficient LED lighting, State DOT said.
The project falls under the jurisdiction of State DOT because the Gowanus Expressway is part of Interstate 278, an interstate roadway between New York and New Jersey.
In an effort to reduce the level of disruption to the community, State DOT will build a temporary bridge adjacent to 79th Street to allow two lanes of traffic to be maintained at all times.
“They’re going to build a temporary bridge to divert the traffic. It’s quite an engineering feat,” Community Board 10 District Manager Josephine Beckmann told the Home Reporter.
Construction of the temporary bridge is expected to be completed in July, Beckmann said.
The temporary bridge is an important part of the project, according to officials, who said the installation will speed up the reconstruction of the overpass. With the temporary bridge in place, work on the overpass can take place in one stage, allowing State DOT to avoid having to break the project up into different segments.
“The rehabilitation of the 79th Street Bridge over the Gowanus Expressway in Brooklyn is an example of New York State’s commitment to building a 21st century transportation network and will deliver an improved riding surface and enhanced safety for both motorists and pedestrians,” State DOT spokesperson Glenn Blain told the Home Reporter in an email..
The 79th Street Bridge reconstruction is part of a larger $78 million State DOT project to rehabilitate five bridges spanning Interstate 278. The Bay Ridge bridge is the only Brooklyn overpass involved in the project. The other four bridges are located on Staten Island. Work on the Staten Island bridges began in September of 2018.