Car-boom! Cuomo: I’m blowing up the old Kosciuszko Bridge

EXCLUSIVE: Kosciuszko Bridge replacement to include bike lane, walking path
Photo by Jason Speakman

The Kosciuszko Bridge is going out with a bang!

The state will blow up parts of the old span sometime this summer, Gov. Cuomo told CBS2 on Tuesday.

Once traffic is up and running on the brand-new incarnation of the bridge — scheduled to open in April — crews will haul the center portion away and then make the remainder of the 77-year-old antique go “boom,” officials say.

Removing the 2,400-ton center span will take two barges and 48 hours, and will take place sometime in April or May, according to the Coast Guard.

Sending the rest of the bridge up in smoke instead of dismantling the entire thing will save between seven and nine months of work, Cuomo claimed.

It is also just a very apt way for it to go out — its namesake Tadeusz Kosciuszko was a military engineer who helped blow up bridges for the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War.

A spokesman for community organization the Newtown Creek Alliance said it wasn’t aware of the demolition plans, but isn’t too worried it sending debris into the river, because the state has paid a lot of attention to keeping workers and the waterway safe so far.

Workers started building the first of two new eye-catching Kosciuszkos in 2013, and are scheduled to kick off construction on the second — slated to be ready in 2020 — once the original bridge is reduced to rubble.

The first of the new bridges will sport five lanes and ultimately serve Queens-bound traffic, while the second will welcome travellers to Kings County with four car lanes and a bike and pedestrian path.

Reach deputy editor Ruth Brown at rbrown@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–8309. Follow her at twitter.com/rbbrown.