Though construction delays continue to plague commuters on the Van Wyck Expressway through Jamaica, Queens, and south to Kennedy Airport, Gov. Kathy Hochul has announced the completion of a key rehabilitation project in a stretch of the long-troubled highway near Citi Field.
The $124 million project to rehabilitate the Van Wyck viaduct between 57th Avenue and the Long Island Rail Road in Queens — including the replacement of concrete decking, reconstruction and repair of concrete piers and other enhanced safety improvements — will extend the life of the roadway for another four decades, Hochul said in making the announcement this week.
As part of the project, the parking lot serving Citi Field, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and Flushing Meadows Corona Park also was refurbished.
While Hochul praised the project's completion, calling the Van Wyck “a crucial route for New Yorkers traveling to and from John F. Kennedy Airport,” a survey of New York State Department of Transportation 511 NY website traffic cameras Wednesday showed continuing traffic jams and delays caused by ongoing construction south of the completed section.
That area stretches from the LIRR Jamaica Yards south through Jamaica, Richmond Hill and South Ozone Park all the way to the Belt Parkway in South Jamaica.
The viaduct where the project took place was built in the early 1960s and had suffered what officials termed “extensive deterioration.”
The refurbishment, which began in 2020, replaced the concrete deck along a 2,200-foot stretch and included repair and replacement of piers, structural steel and joints, officials said.
Defective concrete was replaced with polyester polymer concrete to improve what the governor's office termed “rideability and durability.”
New signage and underdeck lighting were installed and drainage structure was cleaned and repaired to improve stormwater runoff and “boost resiliency” in the case of severe weather, officials said.