Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday announced the beginning of construction on a $12.8 million project to replace an aging bridge over the Long Island Expressway in Dix Hills.
The project will replace the Carlls Straight Path Bridge with a wider span that will include larger shoulders and sidewalks, and a center turn lane to accommodate more vehicles waiting to turn, reducing traffic, Cuomo's office said.
The bridge, which is being designed and built by El Sol Contracting and Construction, of Maspeth, will also have higher vertical clearance to minimize instances of trucks hitting the bridge. Between 2007 and 2011, New York State spent $1 million on bridge repairs from truck strikes.
"The Carlls Straight Path Bridge is a vital access point to the Long Island Expressway, and today we're breaking ground on a project to ensure its safety and reliability for years to come," Cuomo said Monday.
"With new features to better accommodate motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists, and a new design that prevents bridge strikes, these improvements will improve traffic flow on the bridge and the LIE," Cuomo added.
The project, which is expected to be complete by 2015, will also include reconstruction of the roadway approaches to the bridge, new traffic signals, signs, guide rails, pavement and pavement markings.
Under Cuomo's Drivers First initiative, two travel lanes will remain open throughout the duration of construction in order to minimize traffic congestion, and any necessary LIE lane closures will occur on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Pedestrians will also continue to have access to the bridge during the project.