Archive for the ‘main span towers’ Tag

LHV Engineering Expo: 15th Annual STEM Event

As the bridge project met and hit timeline markers, your intrepid reporter met one of her own: last Sunday I attended the Lower Hudson Valley Engineering Expo at White Plains High School. Yes, my then four-and-one-half week new hip and I.

The first photo includes a black strand sticking up from the cross-section of stay cable. The photo above shows the top of that section with wires bundled into it.

Everyone wanted to see how heavy the section of 18-gauge galvanized rebar was compared to the residential rebar. I wonder if anyone tried to pick up the section of cement.

There were oyster shells — I put two up to my ear and thought I heard a whoosh although not like the ocean — and furry friends like this fish to show the project was protecting life below the bridge.

Weather not withstanding as spring is hiding somewhere, the day of companies, experiments, college and universities, learning and contests was a success. It was reigning STEM. You’re smiling if you understand the reference, and please pardon the pun if you don’t.

Watch for story about kids’ fascination with —  and how they’re learning about — STEM topics and activities in the May issue of Westchester Family.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

Flashback Friday: First Construction 66 Years Ago

then

Your eyes are joining the two sections of the main span in the image above, right? History is repeating, now with two spans and a modern, hi-tech, safer and more artistic bridge.

now

Crews started work on the Tappan Zee Bridge in March 1952; this past summer the first span of its replacement opened. Happy and healthy New Year to you!

Photos courtesy New York State Thruway Authority.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2018

Bridge Lights captured against Darkened Sky

Like candles glowing in the night, belying the freezing cold temperatures, the new bridge’s main span towers were alight in blue as its piers below supporting structural steel, road deck and traffic changed rhythmically from blue to red and back, seen in this video by Flying Films NY co-founder and pilot Vinny Garrison.

“I have been in business for four years, back when drones were only things that flew around and shot missiles at people,” Garrison said. “I have enjoyed filming the construction of the new bridge and deconstruction of the old bridge and look forward to having an all-inclusive video from start to finish.”

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2017

TBT: Main Span Towers’ Topping Off Ceremony

It’s Throwback Thursday, and you know what that means: this time last year, media had an exclusive, first-time look at the new westbound span. I’ve said at earlier times and repeat, the project is colorful: the I Lift NY, bright blue structural steel girders, red and yellow cranes, blue jump forms, yellow guard rails.

Governor Cuomo braved freezing temps without gloves, hat or scarf during the topping ceremony for the new bridge’s eight main span towers.

Facing north: one of the new main span towers high above the Hudson River/© H. Jackson

I looked at the stay cables tensioned under the main span and the girders peeking out from under the Westchester approach, where we stood, and at the rebar along the northern side of what would eventually be the shared use path and at the jump forms atop the towers and at the road deck built east from the main span (built west, too, that we couldn’t see).

The photo to the right — one of the towers with stairs leading to the top — got me thinking about how nervous I was in high school gym class if the teacher asked us to stand on the balance beam or sit on the lower of two uneven parallel bars.

Last year was an experience, surpassed only by the opening ceremony this past August.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2017

Inside Story of how TZC built the new TZ Bridge

Four years after its first foundational steel piles were driven into the river bed, one span of the new Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge connecting Westchester and Rockland counties in New York State opened to westbound traffic this past August.

Following a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the twin span, cable-stayed bridge named after his father, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo drove eastbound across the new span with Sleepy Hollow resident and Bronze Star recipient Armando “Chick” Galella in a 1955 Corvette, the same model year Corvette Galella drove with Governor W. Averell Harriman as part of the Tappan Zee Bridge’s December 15, 1955, inaugural procession.

This remarkable transition reflects the tireless efforts of thousands of men and women from Tappan Zee Constructors (TZC), a consortium of some of the world’s best-known and most highly-regarded design, engineering and construction firms.

In October, and weeks ahead of schedule, the Tappan Zee Bridge was retired, and eastbound traffic moved from that bridge to the new span. This allowed the design-build team to begin dismantling the old structure — including the steel and concrete above River Road in Rockland County — and to continue work on the eastbound span, which will open in 2018.

TZC’s first task involved removing the old bridge’s landings, which occupy the same footprint as the second span’s connections to the New York State Thruway. This was accomplished by cutting and dividing sections of steel and concrete into manageable sections, then using barge-based cranes to transport the materials away from the project site.

Transportation barges will carry the materials to ancillary facilities including the Port of Coeymans in Albany County. Many concrete materials and steel trusses will be recycled. More than 130 deck panels units, each approximately 13 feet wide by 50 feet long, will also be given to nearly a dozen state and local municipalities to be repurposed for other bridges and roadways.

Upcoming key operations include lowering of the old bridge’s main span steel cage via hydraulic jacks, and the removal of piles, piers and caissons with foundational material being removed below the bottom of the river. TZC will continue to remove pieces of the old bridge throughout the year, starting from the Rockland and Westchester landings and working toward the middle of the Hudson River.

Work on the new bridge’s eastbound span will continue throughout 2017 and into 2018. Once it opens to traffic, crews will begin building the new bicycle and pedestrian path on the westbound span. Features include six overlooks (resting points), visitor parking and pavilions; and interpretive exhibits, art and signage.

The Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge features an aesthetic lighting system that accentuates the iconic features of the new bridge, specifically its 419-foot towers, stay cables and concrete piers. TZC conducted numerous lighting tests throughout the year to help confirm the aiming angles of each lighting fixture, which needed to precisely follow the rendering plan set forth by lighting designers.

The project’s Visual Quality Panel, made up of the local community and design professionals, helped TZC develop the lighting plan. TZC prepared for these systems well in advance, installing parts of the utility and systems infrastructure into the steel girder assemblies that were fabricated offsite, reducing the amount of work required over the Hudson River.

Once the steel was safely secured atop the bridge’s concrete piers, TZC electricians began splicing and extending material, tying the bridge utilities into the systems in Rockland and Westchester counties. Utility lines provide electricity for the roadway and aesthetic lighting systems, and will also power the bridge’s structural health monitors, security systems and Intelligent Transportation Systems.

Much like the bridge’s roadway lighting, the aesthetic lighting utilizes energy-efficient light emitting diodes, or LEDs. The project’s LEDs are designed with 100,000-hour lifespans, using an estimated 75 percent less energy compared to traditional lighting technology.

TZC is utilizing modular construction techniques to create large sections of the bridge’s foundations, roadway and superstructure on-land. This allows TZC to safely prepare massive segments of the bridge off-site ahead of time, with some steel sections measuring up to 410 feet in length. Its ability to install these bridge elements is aided by the I Lift NY, whose enormous 328-foot lift arm can lift up to 1,900 tons of material — the equivalent of 12 Statues of Liberty at once.

This extraordinary lifting power, which shortened construction time by months from original estimates and reduce project costs by millions of dollars, will also help dismantle the old Tappan Zee Bridge.

Other innovative equipment includes: TZC’s mobile concrete batch plants that supply the majority of the structure’s concrete directly on the river, self-climbing jump forms that rose along with construction efforts to create the iconic main span towers, protective bubble curtains used to absorb the energy produced during pile driving; and the synchronized jacks used to lower football-field-length foundations into the Hudson River.

TZC is also constructing two buildings in Tarrytown: the Thruway Authority’s new maintenance facility and a new State Police facility. The buildings will improve bridge access for State Police and Thruway personnel responsible for maintenance, operations and security and will also allow emergency crews to quickly respond to vehicle breakdowns on the new bridge.

Crews created a new maintenance dock parallel to the new bridge in South Nyack. The dock will assist the Thruway Authority and emergency vessels near the new bridge.

Intelligent Transportation Systems will improve safety and mobility on the crossing by monitoring roadway conditions and notifying Thruway Authority staff of any disruptions. Motorists will also be informed of accidents and closed lanes through overhead electronic signage, enhancements that have been shown to minimize delays, allowing the public to get the most out of its investment.

The stream of data from the bridge’s sensors will be tracked at the Thruway Authority’s command center through an advanced Structural Health Monitoring System that will measure the twin-span crossing’s structural behavior under traffic and weather conditions. Routine and preventive maintenance work will also be efficiently scheduled with this state-of-the-art system. This vital communication network will make the bridge one of the most technologically advanced crossings in the United States when it opens in 2018.

Submitted by Tappan Zee Constructors, LLC (TZC) for the December 2017 issue of Rivertown Magazine. Photos courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority.

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