Worth The Wait

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Newly renovated Ellison Avenue Bridge open for traffic

After a year of construction and 25 years of planning, the newly renovated Ellison Avenue Bridge opened last week, much to the delight of local residents.

Residents gathered at the bridge with Long Island Rail Road (LIRR), Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and officials from the village, county state last week, to celebrate the grand opening of the thoroughfare after its replacement.

Mayor Peter Cavallaro addresses the crowd.
Mayor Peter Cavallaro addresses the crowd.

“Today, we say goodbye to the worst bridge on Long Island, and hello to a new state of the art bridge that was built the right way,” said Sen. Jack Martins. “This is a success story and that’s why we’re here to celebrate.”

The Village of Westbury first asked the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) for the replacement of the heavily-trafficked bridge 25 years ago, and after much planning and discussion, the bridge closed on April, 15, 2015 for year-long construction work. The $17.5 million project, funded by the MTA/LIRR, includes a total reconstruction of the bridge’s road surface, increased visibility at approaches and the redesign of bridge walls. It opened to pedestrian and vehicle traffic on April 15, 2016, exactly one year after closing and right on schedule.

“We’re very pleased the $17.5 million contract was done on time and on budget,” LIRR president Patrick Nowakowski said at the ribbon cutting ceremony. “It’s the way we want to do projects here.”

Mayor Peter Cavallaro thanked the residents for their support and cooperation during the year-long construction, which caused traffic to be re-routed to other streets, as well as local residents enduring vibrations and loud noise from the site.

LIRR president Mike
LIRR president Patrick Nowakowski

“The project could have been very intrusive and difficult but the residents really exhibited a lot of patience and understanding throughout the whole process, which really facilitated this project getting done on time,” Cavallaro said.

Carle Place resident Elizabeth Duryea lives on Broadmoor Lane and said she was happy to see the bridge open again.

“It makes it much easier to get around town,” Duryea said. “It looks pretty and I’m excited it’s open again.”

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