For the last six years, it has been as if the Central Avenue Bridge never existed. Drivers knew to avoid that connector to Boston Post Road and neighbors anxiously implored the City Council to get a replacement bridge built.
After six years, it has finally happened. The city council will be celebrating the reopening of the bridge tomorrow at a ribbon cutting ceremony at 10 a.m. tomorrow.
“It was a big project,” City Manager Scott Pickup said. “The city is excited to have the street reopened.”
Rye provided 20 percent of the cost and a New York State Department of Transportation grant paid for the rest. The city had to comply with many state requirements, which delayed the rebuilding even further, Pickup said.
The bridge was classified as deficient in a 2005 New York State biennial inspection report.
The city began design of the replacement in Nov. 2006. Then in April 2007 the west abutment of the bridge was severely damaged by floodwaters and had to be closed. FEMA was supposed to fund a new bridge but further investigation revealed that Central Avenue is a state road and was ineligible for direct FEMA funding so it was reassigned to the New York State DOT Emergency Relief Program in March, 2009. The estimated construction cost at that time was $1.5 million