They're replacing my beloved Tappan Zee Bridge with a new bridge. We crossed the Tappan Zee this week and saw all the cranes and floating barges in the water on either side of it. They've started driving the pilings for the new bridge which is supposed to be complete in February 2017, at which time they'll take down the old one.
They've also sent a super-crane - one of the world's largest floating cranes - from San Francisco, through the Panama Canal, up to the New York Harbor and finally to the location of the Tappan Zee on the Hudson to help with the building of it.
I'm not in love with the new design of it. I's probably just because I'm so used to seeing it the way it is. A wave of nostalgia sweeps over me when I cross this bridge.
Crossing this bridge meant we were going to visit our grandparents in the Bronx. Crossing this bridge meant I was going out to clubs in the city with my cousin. Crossing this bridge meant I was going to visit my friend at Marymount College in Tarrytown, usually staying at her dorm for the weekend. Crossing this bridge meant I was visiting my Aunt and Uncle, in Irvington, the historic town on the banks of the Hudson. Crossing this bridge meant I always needed to make sure I had money for tolls. And crossing this bridge going back home, upstate, to the Catskills, meant I had at least another half hour to forty minutes of my favorite New York City radio station before I lost the signal.
My maternal grandfather was a welder for the City of New York. He helped build this bridge. I think about that every time I cross it. I think about him up there somewhere, welding pieces of this magnificent structure, the longest bridge in New York State.
But I guess it's time for it to go. The bridge wasn't built to handle the volume of traffic that crosses it every day - it's already been feature on the History Channel's "The Crumbling of America" program - and it should be replaced before something tragic happens. It has to keep up with the growth of the area and the modern amenities people need to make their lives work.
It's weird to say I'll miss a bridge, but I will. I still have a few more years to enjoy it, which gives me plenty of time to sneak up there and snatch a little piece of it to save for posterity.
I have the means to haul off an entire steel beam, but I think I can be satisfied with a small bolt or rivet.
I'll put it next to my grandfather's welding shield.
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2013: Astonished That Anyone Could Schedule All Those Things
2012: A World Of Imagination Left Behind
2011: Betty’s Got It Going On
2010: Don’t Miss The Latest On TDR. Today At Eight, Noon, Six, And Midnight
2009: No Hothouse In Sight
2008: ’Till The Cows Come Home
2007: Salt Lake City Special
2006: It’s More Expensive To Say No
2005: Sorry, no post on this day. The blog didn’t start until May 2005!