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Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge Advances Upper Level Roadway Reconstruction

Bridges and Tunnels
Updated September 10, 2020 10:00 a.m.

New Traffic Pattern Begins Monday Sept. 14


View Video of Movable Barrier Machine


Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Construction & Development announced today that the Authority is moving forward with the next phase of a $145 million Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge roadway reconstruction project. The next phase of the project entails replacement of the original Brooklyn and Staten Island upper level anchorage roadway deck and structural steel with a more robust steel support structure and a stronger, more durable reinforced concrete deck.

Weather permitting, the transition will start Friday, Sept. 11, with a new traffic pattern in place for the Monday morning rush hour on Sept. 14.

"Here is another case where strong project management is guiding work in ahead of time." said Janno Lieber, President of MTA Construction & Development. "Using aggressive schedules we are accelerating projects where possible to take advantage of periods of lower traffic and low ridership, and getting our system is in good repair for New Yorkers returning to our subway, railroads, and bridges and tunnels in the coming months."

“The Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge is a major link in the regional transportation network and ensuring its maintenance and operation for decades to come is critically important,” said Daniel F. DeCrescenzo, Jr., President of MTA Bridges and Tunnels.

During construction, all current lanes of traffic in the peak direction will be maintained, including the bridge’s HOV lane, during weekday morning and afternoon rush hours using a movable barrier that can be shifted to allow for four lanes on the upper level Brooklyn-bound in the morning (6 a.m. to 10 a.m.) and four Staten Island-bound lanes in the afternoon (3 p.m. to 7 p.m.). Additional lane closures will be required to facilitate construction during off-peak and overnight periods.

The movable-barrier method of staged deck replacement has been successfully used on previous projects at the Verrazzano-Narrows, Bronx-Whitestone, and Robert F. Kennedy bridges, allowing customers to use the same number of lanes during peak travel periods as normally available.

The three-and-a-half-year contract to replace the existing concrete deck and structural steel was awarded to El Sol Contracting in Dec. 2019. In addition to the new roadway deck and structural steel replacement on the Staten Island and Brooklyn approaches and anchorage spans, new parapets, bearings, drainage, fire standpipe, and LED roadway lighting will be installed, and steel and concrete repairs will be made.

Since the start of the project, the two-lane upper level Brooklyn approach from the Gowanus Expressway was replaced and completed earlier than planned under an accelerated schedule that took advantage of low traffic volume during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The upper level of the bridge opened to traffic on Nov. 21, 1964; the lower level opened on June 28, 1969. A daily average of 220,000 vehicles crossed the bridge in 2019.

Motorists can sign up for MTA email or text alerts at www.myMTAalerts.com and check the mta.info homepage for the latest information on this work.