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Queensboro Bridge To Get $244 Million For Repairs In Mayor’s Budget

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April 27, 2016 Staff Report

The Queensboro Bridge is slated for a $244 million makeover.

The funding was announced Tuesday as part of the Mayor’s Fiscal Year 2017 Executive Budget. It will cover replacing the Upper Span roadway in both directions, which is due for an upgrade, according to City Hall.

Other structural components of the bridge will also be addressed, and a traffic study is included in the investment.

The Queensboro Bridge is more than 100 years old, opening in 1907. According to the Department of Transportation, its last major rehabilitation was started in the 1990s and ran $300 million.

The reconstruction project is slated for Fiscal Year 2017 and the final design contract has just begun.

Funding will also go towards the Brooklyn Bridge ($28 million) and Manhattan Bridge ($4 million) for repairs and rehabilitation.

The investment announcement comes one month after a proposal to toll the Queensboro Bridge – as well as the other East River Bridges – was formally introduced in Albany. This proposal would also reduce tolls on other major bridges including the RFK/Triborough, in what proponents call a “toll swap” for more fair pricing overall.

The Queensboro would cost $5.54 each way with E-ZPass under this plan, or $8 without, while the RFK/Triborough fare would be reduced by up to 48 percent.

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the_the

I have definitely seen cars on the south side lower roadway. Be careful if you bike there.

Using the normal north side lower roadway bike lane is always frustrating since it drops you off so far east (and need to enter the bike lane so far east – and downhill to boot). That is one very long steep climb heading from Manhattan to Queens.

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Pete

That lane is for cars (not sure if it’s legal to bike on it)…but converting the outer roadway on the south side to a pedestrian lane would be amazing! The current bike/pedestrian lane is too crowded, and the 50/50 split is ridiculous. No way two bikes traveling in opposite directions can safely pass within the confines of the bike lane. This leads to pedestrians complaining and/or acting aggressively towards bikers who ride in a more appropriate position just into the pedestrian lane. Solution #1: bike lane 2/3 of span, pedestrian 1/3. Solution #2: outer roadway on south side becomes pedestrian lane (similar to Williamsburg bridge) and north side outer roadway just for bikes.

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brooklynmc

I go over the 59th street bridge almost every day. Lately, they have been closing the bike path at night and offering free shuttle service. So, I stood in line for 15 minutes till the truck and bus came. It was about 15 more minutes till everyone got their bikes in the back of the truck. Then we drove around the block in traffic to get on the bridge. Then we sat in traffic across the entire bridge. Then the bus took the long way through traffic all the way down past JetBlue and around the immediate neighborhood, zig zagging around till they reached the drop off area. The entire trip took one and a half hours. To cross the damn bridge. I was so pissed. Interesting thing was the entire time I was in the bus, in traffic, I was watching cyclists zoom by on the downtown facing side of the bridge. All these years of crossing the bridge I never knew there was a bike lane on both sides. It seems that it is closed but people still use it.

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Frank

The outer roadway is now closed at night because of the number of accidents that happened on the tight curve at the end of the bridge on the Queens side.

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brooklynmc

That explains the cones they use to close an entrance to the bridge. When I was waiting in the bus line I saw a number of cyclists go through there. Obviously, it is probably illegal, but I saw at least a dozen bikes go by.

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