Design-Build of Electrical and Mechanical Rehabilitations at the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge Harlem River Lift Span
New York City
Award of Merit

Owner: MTA Bridges & Tunnels
Lead Design Firm | MEP Engineer: HNTB New York Engineering and Architecture PC
General Contractor: Kiewit Infrastructure Co.
Structural Engineer: Naik Consulting Group PC
Engineering and Survey: Matrix New World Engineering, Land Survey and Landscape Architecture PC
Architecture and Engineering: CSA Architects and Engineers PC

The nearly 85-year-old, 310-ft vertical lift bridge is ready for decades more of service thanks to a comprehensive rehabilitation that included electrical and mechanical system upgrades, installation of a new standby generator, and enhancements to provide a safer environment for maintenance personnel. 

Along with an accelerated timeline that delivered the improvements ahead of schedule and below budget, worker safety was the team’s paramount concern, particularly given challenges like high exposure to falls, dropped objects, awkward hoisting operations and the close proximity of near constant traffic. Promoting craft engagement and collaboration from the outset, the multi-faceted safety program encouraged workers to observe, report and correct potential issues and hold peers accountable for performing tasks as risk-free as possible. 

The design-build process also provided an increased opportunity to utilize engineering controls and to “design out” potential hazards before mobilization to the field. These included a plan to streamline installation of equipment and to design more effective work platforms at the top of the tower and lift span. The project tallied nearly 85,300 work hours with no recordable incidents or lost-time injuries.

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