The 87-year-old Roosevelt Avenue Bridge connecting Corona and Flushing will soon be getting a major facelift.
The Department of Transportation announced at Tuesday’s Community Board 4 meeting that the span, which stretches from 126th Street to College Point Boulevard over the Flushing River and Van Wyck Boulevard, will be the eventual subject of a nearly four-year renovation to modernize the structure.
Tom Elsroth, the deputy engineering manager for Aecom, the consulting firm for the DOT, said the reconstruction of the bridge is desperately needed because of the decades of wear and tear.
“If you’ve travelled over it, you will notice the pavement is in bad condition. The structure itself is in bad condition,” Elsroth said. “In a nutshell, the bridge is one of, if not the worst rated in the city. It has to get fixed.”
Included in the reconstruction plans are the installation of new girders, a new deck, new lighting, minor patching work underneath the bridge and an approximate two-foot widening of the sidewalk to allow for a bike lane.
Don’t expect to see construction right away, though. Queens Borough Commissioner Dalila Hall said the DOT mission right now is to secure community support for the installation of temporary easements during the pre-construction phase of the project, which requires a Uniform Land Use Review Process.
“We’re a year away from final design, talking about detours and anything like that,” Hall said. “But what we need right now is temporary easements for the construction of the bridge.”
Hall said service on the No. 7 train, which runs atop the bridge, should not be impacted during construction.
The pre-construction phase is expected to last nine months, while the bridge renovations will occur in three phases, each lasting about one year.
CB 4 voted unanimously to support the creation of temporary easements.