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I Lift NY: A Tappan Zee Bridge Photo Journal

by Dave Zornow

Nyack, April 24 — It’s what cynics would expect from a government contractor: they arrive on the job in October and sit around doin’ nothing until April. But don’t pick a fight with this construction worker: on it’s first day of work, it picked up 600 tons of concrete and moved it without one peep of complaint.

TZBPan_ILNYThe I Lift NY super crane made its first “pick” on Friday on a cold, breezy morning over a big chop in the middle of the Hudson River between Tarrytown and Nyack.  The crane hoisted and set a 600 ton precast concrete pile caps, during a 3 1/2 hour lift that seemed more like watching grass grow than building a bridge because of the deliberate careful movements of the crane’s operators.

Tappan Zee Constructors says I Lift NY will save time and money because one ginormous crane will replace multiple cranes which would be required to coordinate and move the same material. The Friday lift was an example of using how large pre-fabricated sections of the new bridge can be produced off-site, shipped by barge to the construction site and lifted into place by the super crane.

The Friday pick was a modest 600 tons, however, in the future the crane will be required to lift bridge components weight up to 1100 tons. It’s big payoff will come when it is time to demolish and remove the existing bridge to make way for the 2nd span of the new TZB

The first lift may not have made compelling video — but the bright early sun shining on the red, white and blue 30 story tall crane created an amazing sight, juxtaposing the state-of-the-art new bridge construction  against the stately silver and slightly rusted venerable Tappan Zee Bridge. The old bridge is still safe and functioning fine, but it’s beginning to show its age. Or maybe the red color peeking through the old bridge signaled a little bit of  jealously toward the new twin span structure that will replace the the original TZB just about the time it turns 60 years old.

The First I Lift NY pick
(three hours of action in 20 secs)

You can see the full video 1:21 video at on

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