Archive for July, 2018|Monthly archive page

Fewer Expansion Joints ensure a Smoother Ride

These are the expansion joints — one of 12 such joints on the westbound span that absorb the bridge’s steel and concrete slight expansions and contractions — I photographed that freezing December day, when media got its first look at the westbound span, and when the main span towers were completed.

Same for the eastbound span in the above photo, courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority. So while crews are pouring concrete between the deck panels on some parts of the span, they’re installing joints in other areas of it.

Deck panel installation for that span and its 11 joints was completed earlier this month. South of the new span (below), Tappan Zee Bridge pile caps and piles await removal. Photos are courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority.

It nearly 200 expansion joints made for noisy and bumpy rides, sometimes in sync to songs on the radio.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

Last Historical Society of Rockland County TZB Tour

You find all sorts of interesting objects in the Hudson River, like these pier caps from the Tappan Zee Bridge that were being barged to the Port of Coeymans and will be reused. Photo courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority.

Today was the last time the Mississippi-style paddle wheeler River Rose hosted the Historical Society of Rockland County’s Tappan Zee Bridge Experience: Past, Present and Future. I attended last month and saw the bridge, despite missing a center chunk of its span and landings, getting as much camera attention as its recent $4 billion replacement.

“This is our fifth year, we’ve taken 12 trips and about 1,800 people” to see the bridge project, HSRC Executive Director Susan Deeks said during that trip. “It’s been a blast. Everyone has had a good time during these trips.”

It has been a blast for me, Susan, for the past five years, and I thank you and HSRC, the Thruway Authority and the bridge project for these fascinating and unparalleled adventures.

Crews continue removing parts of the Tappan Zee and putting overhead gantries on the eastbound span. Might as well take down the 45-miles-per-hour speed limit LED signs on the westbound span gantries as vehicles, especially trucks, like to ignore them. I follow the speed limit and get tailgated.

Getting there. Gantry installation, closure pours, concrete pours at the Rockland landing and work on the Thruway maintenance and state police facility continue.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

Concrete Pours continue on Soon-to-Open Span

Remember these? They’re deck panels at the Westchester landing months earlier. The same way kids’ toys interlock, these hairpin reinforcing steel bars connect deck panels to each other. Reinforcing concrete will be poured between the spaces (around the steel) prior to the final driving surface. Photo courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority.

Enlarged photo of Westchester landing, where crews are pouring cement closures after deck panels were installed /Kevin Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

The other day someone asked me why the Tappan Zee Bridge couldn’t be used as a bridge park. One look at the section below from the same photo will answer his question.

People ask why the Tappan Zee Bridge cannot become a bridge park. The reason: no way to connect it to land /Kevin Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

You can see that the new westbound span and in-progress eastbound span are connected to the Westchester landing, and the piers of the Tappan Zee Bridge are hanging out in the river. How would people access the bridge park if there’s no connection to land?

Westchester and Rockland have plenty of beautiful riverside parks to enjoy. I disagreed with the idea for a bridge park, namely for safety and lack of feasibility. There’s a way to enjoy the river view from the new bridge when the side path opens in 2019.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

ICYMI: Fireworks Display courtesy of EarthCam®

Above is an edited version of the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks on New York City’s East River courtesy of EarthCam®. There may be a photo somewhere of the new bridge lit up in red, white and blue; I’m sure it looked pretty reflected in the dark river.

Hope you enjoyed the 4th of July holiday.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

On My Mind: Someone, Somewhere cursing at Me

Photo of a manual typewriter’s typebars & keyboard/Credit Rafaela Biazi (@rafaelabiazi)

“Everyone has a story and needs someone to tell it,” my editor said from across his desk. I was in his office asking for advice about how to angle a particular story. “You’ll do fine.”

That became the tag line for my business card because it’s what journalism means to me. It’s storytelling, being the voice for someone who has a cause, a reason, a concern. It allows me entrance into others’ lives for a time, to listen and see and then to share what I heard and saw, to give them a wider audience.

The last line of every blog post here is “I’d like to know what you think.” I first heard it years ago, when veteran journalist and MSNBC host Ed Schultz would tell his audience, “Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think.”

Schultz died last week at the age of 64, an untimely death, I read. I remember watching him years ago cover voters’ efforts to recall Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Not sure why this comes to mind as does Rachel Maddow’s coverage of the Flint, Michigan, water crisis that some say has not been resolved.

“If it pisses off one person, then one person read it,” another editor told me during my early reporting years. It encouraged me that somewhere out there, someone was cursing at me.

Another important piece of information came from my first editor at The Reporter Dispatch (now the Journal News) city desk. We used typewriters. Bob Thompson sat to my right and had longish hair, wore glasses and always wore a suit and a tie. “Remember, the name is The New York Times,” he told me. “All four words in the name start with capital letters.”

To this day, I cringe when editors at established and respected publications let stories with the New York Times slip past them and onto readers. How does that happen?

I am proud of my work and take this very seriously. “Off the record” IS “off the record,” and confidences told to me stay with me. There is no reason to create “fake news” or trash media when you don’t like the truth we’re reporting. One editor last year dropped a story she assigned when she felt running it would cost her an advertiser. To me, that meant she valued money more than truth.

I credit photographers, artists and other writers when I use their work. The above photo of a manual typewriter’s typebars and keyboard was taken by Rafaela Biazi (@rafaelabiazi).

When the leader of the free world trashes our free press it hurts everyone. If you don’t like the news that’s reported about you, Mr. President, then change what you are doing and saying.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

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