Few Lane Closures This Week; Project Updates

Great news!

calvin&Hobbes2

Today and tomorrow only: the southbound right lane of I-87/I-287 near Exit 9 will be closed from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Additional construction details are here.

And because it can’t be said enough:

Recreational boaters have six new lighted channel markers guiding them to and from the Piermont shore, per a recent press release. Off-limits is the U.S. Coast Guard’s Safety Zone; heed the expanded Regulated Navigation Area (RNA). Safe boating, everyone.

Details — including the Coast Guard’s weekly Local Notice to Mariners, excerpted and in its entirety — are listed under Boater Safety Information on the New NY Bridge website. A LNM primer is here.

 

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

Why Traffic Always Goes in the Other Direction

Sometimes it just happens that way/© Janie Rosman 2014

Sometimes it just happens that way/© Janie Rosman 2014

Four nearly empty lanes. Cars zipping along merrily (as nana used to say). On the drive back from Rockland County, I thought about the New NY Bridge video. Would be nice to have this all the time. Soon.

Meantime . . .

Remember when I saw the Tappan Zee Bridge Patrol rescue a car in the bridge’s right lane a few months ago? I wanted to know more about the folks who drive the three-mile span, and how the highway is widened.

Inside this is the vehicle that moves the zipper barrier from west to east./Steve Alpert at http://www.alpsroads.net.

Inside this is the vehicle that moves the zipper barrier from west to east./Steve Alpert at http://www.alpsroads.net.

Installed back in 1993, the movable barrier takes 45 minutes to snake one way. Four become three, and then vice versa —  lanes, that is — depending upon the time of day, construction, or other traffic factors.

Factoids . . .

Although moving the zipper at 2:30 p.m. adds a lane for bridge-bound vehicles before rush hour, traffic persists. Maybe they’re not even going to the bridge. It’s the other side. Or maybe, like I often am, you’re in that jam. Around 7 p.m., the zipper truck reverses the process so folks driving east/southbound can have their fair share of highway.

On the way to Tarrytown Third Friday/© Janie Rosman 2014

On the way to Tarrytown Third Friday/© Janie Rosman 2014

So who drives the two zippers machines?

They’re maintained by six Thruway employees with the title “Movable Barrier Operator,” who also do maintenance work on and around the bridge. All operators/drivers are trained in-house by experienced, veteran Thruway staff.

However . . .

Once the new bridge’s first span opens in late 2016, it’s bye-bye zipper. The plan is to move west/northbound traffic to the new span in December, and two months later, in February 2017, east/southbound traffic will also move to the new span.

Where the zipper barrier stays when on the Tarrytown side of the bridge./Steve Alpert at http://www.alpsroads.net.

Where the zipper barrier stays when on the Tarrytown side of the bridge./Steve Alpert at http://www.alpsroads.net.

Thruway maintenance crews regularly patrol the bridge to make sure there’s no debris in the roadway, and that motorists in distress get needed aid.

What about driving someone’s car across the bridge?

While the Thruway Authority has no official driver escort policy, guess what? Its patrol team is available to help if motorists with bridge phobias want their cars driven across the three-mile span. And they do, a few times every year.

That one question . . .

Sometimes people ask if it’s true about seeing the the river through cracks in the road. What? The Thruway Authority spent three-quarters of a million dollars on a deck replacement project.

What I look for — now that I know where it is — is the blue-and-white sign for County of Rockland/County of Westchester. And realize for a few seconds my car and I are in two places at the same time. That’s mind-boggling enough.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

Play by the Rules . . . Because Safety Rules!

boater safety

OK, ladies and gentlemen, here’s a quick quiz. Ready? Let’s begin.

First. What safety feature do you wear in a car? “A seat belt.”

Next. Is a rule or an option?A rule.”

Next. Name one safety item you wear on a boat. “A life jacket.”

Next. Is this a requirement? “Yes.”

Finally. What are new safety measures in the construction area? “An updated boater safety guide on the New NY Bridge website includes the Piermont Channel markers and Safety Zone.” Right!

Project officials wear personal floatation devices and hard hats while in the construction area/© Janie Rosman 2014

Project officials wear personal floatation devices and hard hats while in the construction area/© Janie Rosman 2014

The state’s recently-enacted Safe Boating Law requires anyone born on or after May 1, 1996, to complete an eight-hour boating safety course before operating a mechanically-propelled vessel in the state’s navigable waters. Those born before May 1, 1996, are exempt.

Details — including the Coast Guard’s weekly Local Notice to Mariners, excerpted and in its entirety — are listed under Boater Safety Information on the New NY Bridge website. A LNM primer is here.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

What Happened Yesterday: Before and After

I had a blast! The tour was scheduled for three hours, and unlike the fated trip that stranded seven people, our Captain and his crew did a marvelous job, as did the Historical Society of Rockland County.

Project officials boarded the boat near the construction site, their presentations followed by a question-and-answer session.

Hours earlier, I got lost driving to Haverstraw Marina. Or so I thought.

getting-lost-while-driving-car

Sans a GPS, I wrote down the directions from an online map search and made it to within five minutes of my destination. That seems to be my pattern: I stop to ask directions only to find I’m less than five minutes/blocks from where I’m going.

Remind me to tell you about the time I drove to Cobbleskill to visit friends for a long weekend.

So I called the marina and was given simpler, more direct instructions. This is important to note because it was a straight route. No turns, just follow the road from 9W, and take that same road to get back to 9W.

I got lost again. On the way back. Or so I thought. Once off the boat, I nearly flew to my car: I had to make a stop in town, and then meet my editorial deadline. Behind the wheel again, I followed the double yellow line since when you do that, I was told, there’s a good chance you won’t get lost.

driving

That sign didn’t look familiar, this building didn’t look familiar. In fact, nothing I passed looked familiar, so I drove back to the marina to get directions. On the way, I flagged down a car going toward the direction I was headed minutes earlier.

The driver looked familiar. I remembered speaking with him and his wife before we got on the boat. Yes, he said. You can follow me to Route 9W. And I did, feeling silly because Route 9W was less than three minutes from the place where I’d stopped to turn around. Oh well.

Thank you to the couple from Westchester for helping me. Thank you.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

Update: Bridge Art Show to Open Next Month

News about the 2014 Bridge Art Show that you and I have been waiting for!

Nature's painted clouds & NYC skyline/© Janie Rosman 2014

Nature’s painted clouds & NYC skyline/© Janie Rosman 2014

More than 50 artists submitted works that will be judged by the Visual Quality Panel during the next few weeks. Watch for notices: the show opens after Labor Day for a two-month run at the Westchester and Rockland Community Outreach Centers. Both are open Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

These Hudson Valley artists’ creativity might spark a memory or two, or show you a new vision, or the familiar in a new light. I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

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