Magnificent to look at – but less than user friendly for the commuter. The Tappan Zee Bridge has been called the bane of the Rockland county commuter. Someone once referred to it as “a bridge too slow.” Whatever prose you choose to use (including profanity) it is clear that the current bridge – is not enough to service the commuters who rely on it adequately. For months, planners have been meeting behind closed doors discussing plans for renovation and expansion. This week the “grand plan” was released by the DOT and it includes a new bridge to be built next to the old bridge with an eye-popping $16 billion price tag. The services of the expanded bridge are impressive and include a rapid bus transit system that will utilize the I-287 with accompanying expansion and infrastructure changes. This is to provide a mass transit service that will permit effective public transportation from Rockland to business hubs in Westchester such as White Plains. The bridge construction is also being constructed to support a commuter rail system that will hook up with the Hudson Line of Metro-North in Tarrytown for an easier commute to midtown Manhattan for Rockland and Orange County residents. Many public meetings and hearings will probably cause the plan to be tweaked and changed. Construction is not set to begin until 2012.
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