Photo Courtesy New NY Bridge Project
Video Courtesy New NY Bridge Project

Using a massive barge-mounted crane—now nicknamed "I Lift NY" but formerly known as the "Left Coast Lifter," when it was on San Francisco's Bay Bridge project—crews placed the first horizontal steel assembly of the new Tappan Zee Bridge on June 17.

The crane's load, including the steel assembly, lifting frame and rigging, weighed in at more than 1,360 tons. The 410-ft segment is the first of 134 similar steel assemblies that will form the two-span structure.

The bridge across the Hudson River will carry the New York State Thruway and replace the existing Tappan Zee, which first opened in 1955. Each steel assembly is welded together at a site 95 miles up the Hudson River near Albany, then floated down to the site on barges. The project is set for completion in 2018.