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Raju Mann

President & CEO
  • 11/16
  • Community
  • Urban Planning


New, Permanent Pedestrian Bridge Scheduled for Completion in 2018

New York State, New York City, and local elected officials today kicked off construction of the West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge with a groundbreaking event in Battery Park City on Tuesday, November 15.

The new pedestrian bridge will span 230 feet across Route 9A/West Street, from the corner of Joseph P. Ward Street and West Street to the corner of West Thames Street and Little West Street, with a single mid-span pier placed in the median of West Street. It is designed as a covered lenticular truss bridge with both an elevator and access stairway at each of the two terminus points, providing a permanent, direct pedestrian connection from the Financial District to Battery Park City, the Hudson River waterfront, and other local attractions.

“Today we’re honored to start work on the final strand of connective tissue between the Financial District and Battery Park City” said Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) President and Chief Operating Officer Shari C. Hyman. “Lower Manhattan is now a vibrant live, work, and play community, and this new bridge will further add to that neighborhood feel – regardless of which side of the highway you’re on.”

“The long-awaited West Thames Street Bridge will provide a crucial link from the Financial District and its subway stations, to Battery Park City and the Hudson River waterfront,” said Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “Thanks to Governor Cuomo’s leadership, we are nearing completion of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation’s (LMDC) mission, of rebuilding Lower Manhattan following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.”

“Today is a win for downtown residents, whose resolute commitment and advocacy revitalized Lower Manhattan and continue to make this community a vibrant place to live, work and visit,” said Seth Myers, Executive Vice President at New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC). “The West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge will provide safe, permanent, and beautiful pedestrian access between the Financial District and Battery Park City, and we look forward to its completion.”

Scheduled for completion by mid-2018, the West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge will replace the existing temporary Rector Street Pedestrian Bridge, which was constructed as an interim crossing of West Street after September 11, 2001. The new pedestrian bridge was designed by Thornton Tomasetti /Weidlinger Transportation and WXY Architecture + Urban Design. NYCEDC, through its contractor Skanska USA, is leading the project’s construction efforts.

The project is receiving approximately $33 million in federal funding from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) as part of a Community Development Block Grant through LMDC, and approximately $8.2 million from BPCA, which will assume primary maintenance responsibilities for the bridge upon completion. The New York City Department of Transportation will own the bridge and assume secondary maintenance responsibilities. In addition to the structure itself, supplemental landscaping will be provided along the existing dog run near the western end of the new bridge in Battery Park City.

“Today, we mark another step forward on the long journey to recover from the terrible devastation of September 11th,” said Holly Leicht, HUD Regional Administrator for New York and New Jersey. “HUD’s flexible Community Development Block Grant program is enabling Lower Manhattan to not just retain its place as the global center of commerce and finance, but to become a more walkable, livable community than it’s ever been.”

“NYC DOT owns, operates, and maintains 789 bridges and tunnels throughout New York City and I am proud to include the West Thames Street Pedestrian bridge into that number” said NYC DOT Manhattan Borough Commissioner Luis Sanchez.  “This bridge will provide vital access to pedestrians crossing West Street connecting the Financial District to Battery Park City.”

“Weaving the lower Manhattan and Battery Park City community together across the West Side Highway is a major priority – and the West Thames Street Bridge project is an important new connection,” said State Senator Daniel Squadron. “It’s a local priority that is another example of the significance, locally and beyond, of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation in our community’s growth. Thank you to the Battery Park City Authority, LMDC, State and City DOT, EDC, HUD, my colleagues, Community Board One, and the community.”

“Two of Manhattan’s greatest strengths are its walkability and its vibrant streetscape, but large at-grade highways divide neighborhoods and diminish that vibrancy,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “The West Thames Street project will quite literally bridge the gap between Battery Park City and the Financial District, benefiting the entire Lower Manhattan community.”

“This groundbreaking is the latest in a series of milestones signaling a bright new future for Battery Park City,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “For years after the attacks of September 11, this has been a neighborhood largely divided from the rest of the city. The completion of the West Thames Street Bridge will not only provide a new convenient pathway for pedestrians, but will also inaugurate a new era for Battery Park City as a unique and beautiful waterfront neighborhood knit firmly into the fabric of our city. I thank the Battery Park City Authority and its city and state partners for making this vital project a reality.”

“A safe connection to means of public transportation and other amenities for southern part of Battery Park City is essential for residents,” said Ninfa Segarra, Chair, CB1 Battery Park City Committee. “We greatly appreciate the efforts of all parties and look forward to its completion.”

“Skanska USA is honored to build the West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge,” said Thomas Webb, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Skanska USA. “We have a long and proud history of building and rebuilding Lower Manhattan and know the Financial District and Battery Park City are two places many people visit, commute to work, and most importantly, call home. As a result, Skanska will build a majority of the bridge off-site to keep construction impact and noise to a minimum for the surrounding communities.”

The West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge represents the latest and final pedestrian crossing to be built since the September 11th attacks on New York City. Prior to attacks there were three pedestrian bridges across West Street in Lower Manhattan. The southernmost connected the World Financial Center (now known as Brookfield Place) to the Financial District at the south side of Liberty Street. To the north, another bridge connected the World Financial Center’s Winter Garden to the World Trade Center, just south of Vesey Street. The third and northernmost bridge (the Tribeca Bridge) connected Tribeca to Stuyvesant High School and Battery Park City’s north neighborhood at Chambers Street. The September 11th attacks destroyed the bridge at the Winter Garden and significantly damaged the bridge at Liberty Street, leaving only the Tribeca Bridge open for use.

As a result, two temporary bridges were constructed to restore grade-separated access to Battery Park City – one at Vesey Street and a second between Rector and Carlisle Streets, known as the Rector Street Bridge. Since that time, the pedestrian concourse under West Street, between the new PATH World Trade Center Terminal and the Winter Garden, has been completed, allowing the temporary bridge at Vesey Street to be deconstructed and removed. The Liberty Street Bridge has also been repaired and rededicated as the Liberty Park Bridge, opening to the public in June 2016.

West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge Rendering (Full View Rendering)


West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge (Battery Park City Landing Rendering)


West Thames Street Pedestrian Bridge (Interior Rendering)


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