As part of the LIRR Expansion Project, work replacing the Nassau Boulevard Bridge in Garden City began Monday.
According to the Third Track Constructors Ambassador Team, the bridge has been a source of many accidents over the years, due to its being a low-hanging bridge, which has resulted in constant train delays in both directions as LIRR crews often have to worry about safety and structural stability before restoring service.
Aaron Donovan, spokesman for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, said it is a “very common problem” for truck drivers to accidentally hit the low-hanging bridge on the boulevard. The new bridge will stand at 14 feet, an increase from the original bridge’s elevation of 11 feet and 6 inches.
“The standard is 14 feet for the project,” Donovan said.
The bridge’s two-track structure will be removed and replaced with a three-track structure on the bridge for train travel. The project is slated to be complete by the end of October.
The Nassau Boulevard Bridge is one of seven bridges and overpasses being remodeled to accommodate the multi-year project to add a third Long Island track from Floral Park to Hicksville.
Starting on the evening of June 24, one lane on Nassau Boulevard was due to be closed. Flaggers and detour signage will be posted throughout the boulevard to help direct drivers proceeding north and south along the remaining open lane.
To avoid any daytime disruptions and keep the project on schedule, demolition of the original bridge will be done overnight for the first two weeks of the project.
The Ambassador Team promised that as long as 3TC crews are able to maintain safe and reliable operations, traffic lanes in the area will remain open throughout the four-month project. Since the area will be an active construction area, however, the 3TC anticipates occasional, unavoidable partial and full road closures to ensure driver and pedestrian safety.
The LIRR Expansion Project team has developed a traffic management plan in coordination with village officials that guides drivers when alternate routes may be necessary. One pedestrian sidewalk under the bridge will remain accessible during construction.
This project began after the completion of the Cherry Lane Bridge in Carle Place June 2. The original bridge was 66 years old.