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EXCLUSIVE: Squibb Park Bridge repairs to run $700K, Bridge Park won’t say why it closed • Brooklyn Paper

EXCLUSIVE: Squibb Park Bridge repairs to run $700K, Bridge Park won’t say why it closed

Quicker route: The new wooden footbridge that puts a little bounce in your step provides an easier way to access the world class Brooklyn Bridge Park from Squibb Park in Columbia Heights.
Photo by Elizabeth Graham

The bouncy, $4.1-million footbridge that connects Brooklyn Heights to Brooklyn Bridge Park is set to get $700,000 in repairs, but park honchos say they probably won’t share what made it so dangerous in the first place.

Work on the Squibb Park Bridge is set to wrap up in the spring, but a councilman’s demand for answers does not appear as if it will be met anytime soon.

“We really want to know exactly what happened,” said Councilman Steve Levin (D–Brooklyn Heights), who sits on the park’s board of directors. “If it’s a design or construction problem we want to know.”

Park honchos shuttered the springy footpath back in August when they noticed it was moving more than usual. The big repair bill will come just two years after the zigzagging span opened, meaning it will have cost $200,000 per month by the time it reopens.

“It’s a lot of money,” Levin said.

During the meeting, Levin pressed Regina Myer, president of the private park, about administrators’ efforts to recoup the costs for repair and to issue a report detailing the results of an engineering study. Myer said the staff would consider it, but added that she worried doing so could hurt a potential lawsuit.

“We don’t want to jeopardize the possibility of litigation,” she said.

Myer decides what the board of directors votes on, but not how it votes.

A spokeswoman for the park said work on a study is ongoing.

“Engineers are working to determine the cause of the bridge misalignment and will soon begin repairs to ensure that the bridge is open as soon as possible for the public to safely enjoy,” she said.

The embattled Pierhouse development project includes structures that are being built on either side of Squibb Bridge, but park officials said back in October that the construction does not appear to have damaged it.

Reach reporter Matthew Perlman at (718) 260–8310. E-mail him at mperlman@cnglocal.com. Follow him on Twitter @matthewjperlman.

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