- Construction Materials/ Strength and Durability. The existing bridge has served us well for 113 years and remains functional. What construction material considerations/features will enable this new causeway bridge to be built as durable as the existing bridge, especially with the added challenges of heavier vehicles, heavier traffic, and climate change? Will these materials absorb traffic sounds or amplify them to cause noise pollution?
- Elevation / Climate Change. From what we’ve been told, the proposed bridge has been elevated somewhat but is it sufficient to meet the formidable challenges of climate change and increasingly more frequent and more severe storms? How do we know that the elevation of the bridge will be sufficient to stay above rising water levels? Shouldn’t it be built both higher and stronger than our existing bridge, to accommodate climate change?
- The Temporary Bridge. Should we forego the temporary bridge with this new causeway design? Is it even needed, given the less complicated construction of the causeway bridge? Could a Storm like Sandy destroy the temporary bridge? Is the temporary bridge going to be strong enough, should we make it stronger, or avoid it altogether? The temporary bridge 1) adds to the total construction time; 2) delays the date of completion; 3) adds to cost; 4) is less safe/reliable under some conditions. Should we eliminate the temporary bridge from the plan and simply build the new bridge along side the existing bridge?
- Appearance. The existing bridge, with piers, has a proven track record, is compatible with its surroundings, and should be rebuilt, say 75% of our surveyed members. The new causeway bridge is much closer to the existing bridge in design, but lacks any unique decorative features that the existing bridge has. City Planning designated The Special City Island District to preserve the “character” that is vital to our economy and “unique identity.” But the “plain vanilla” design lacks both unique identity and character. Is it possible to add some decorative “nautical” features to make it look less generic and more in sync with the Special City Island District? Even our Hawkins Park and Ambrosini Park Playground have nautical themes. A signature look is even more important for our bridge, which is the first and last thing people see.Think of the many movies made on City Island, and even the short clip showing Jerry Seinfeld driving over the City Island Bridge and entering the City Island Diner for breakfast.
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