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Very rusty, Verazzano getting painted

Twenty years after its last touchup, the rust-covered Verrazano-Narrows Bridge is finally getting a new paint job. Crews are wrapping the span’s legs to block any lead paint from falling in to the water.
Photo By Tom Callan

The V-Z Bridge has a new pair of booties!

The state has begun a $19-million paint job of Verrazano-Narrow bridge, and the first step in the process was to cover the feet of Staten Island tower’s legs so paint, which contains lead, doesn’t escape into the water below while contractors blast off the old paint and rust, patching steel where needed, and finally slapping on three coats of paint.

The paint job is par for the course for a bridge that withstands some of the toughest atmospheric conditions in the area.

“The Verrazano-Narrows is particularly susceptible to corrosion because of the wind patterns where it sits in the bay and the bridge’s exposure to harsh sea and salt air,” said MTA spokeswoman Judy Glave.

Contractors are spending the next two years getting the job done.

The contractor, Corcon Construction, is operating off of barges located in the water just off the tower, Glave said.

The bridge — named after the first European explorer to sail into New York Harbor in 1524 — was the world’s longest suspension span when it opened in 1964.

Its 693-foot-high towers are 1-5/8 inches farther apart at their tops than at their bases because the vast scale of the bridge made it necessary to compensate for the earth’s curvature.

Last year, we ran a front page photo showing how bad the old girl had gotten. At the time, the state said the rust was no big deal, but painting would be scheduled.

The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge looks like it’s wearing booties, but it is actually getting a paint job.
Photo by Tom Callan

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