The damaged I-495 bridge in Delaware is getting a delivery of $5 million in steel from Tappan Zee Constructors for emergency repairs.
According to USA Today, the Tappan Zee team has sent on-hand steel rebar and rebar cages to reinforce the concrete supports installed to fix the crippled bridge that crosses the Christina River.
The bridge is over 40 years old and once carried over 90,000 cars every day across the I-495 in downtown Wilmington. The bridge was closed on June 2 due to the discovery of serious damage. The bridge construction company is doing their best to repair the Delaware bridge as quickly as possible to get the highway up and running.
The Tappan Zee Constructors LLC President, Darrell Waters, released the following statement: "We are expediting delivery of the steel-reinforcement materials to enable timely repair of the bridge in Delaware."
Steel cages for bridge repairs arrived this past Friday in Wilmington. According to Geoff Sundstrom, a DelDOT spokesman, the rest of the cages will be specially created by Delaware Department of Transportation and shipped to the bridge repair site in the coming weeks.
"Where the time-savings comes in is that they already have the fabrication line set up for this, and already have the steel on site," said Sundstrom. "It saves us time, and some money."
The bridge repairs will be finished much sooner than usual for a job of this size and magnitude. The partnership between Delaware and the Tappan Zee company will save the state six to eight weeks. Normally, it would take much longer to acquire the necessary steel and materials to fix the bridge, especially during the height of construction season.
The Tappan Zee steel isn't a donation, however. Delaware Department of Transportation will have to reimburse the company for the 4,800 linear feet of 4-foot-wide rebar cages. The total estimated cost of the steel comes to $4 or $5 million.
According to Lohud, Gregory D. Burkhart, vice president of the construction firm J.D. Eckman Inc., said the following in regards to the reimbursement: "They have to replenish what they're giving to us, but they have plenty of it and won't need it for a few months.
New York State Thruway Authority board chairman, Howard Milstein, released the following statement about the New York company's involvement in the emergency repair: "Diverting extra materials from the New NY Bridge project will have no impact on our project schedule here on the Hudson, but it will go a long way to ensuring a safe resolution to a critical infrastructure emergency."