Demolition of the Tappan Zee Bridge has been rescheduled for Tuesday at 10 a.m. after “inclement weather” scuttled Saturday’s planned blast, the builders behind the new Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge announced.
“The sustained winds caused delays to the preparatory work of the planned demolition operation,” Tappan Zee Constructors said in a statement.
The east span of the 62-year-old bridge—linking Tarrytown and Nyack—was originally slated for demolition Saturday morning. Builders planned for a damaged section of the cantilever bridge to go down in explosive glory with a controlled blast.
A carefully timed explosion was set to send the east bridge anchor toppling away from the new Mario M. Cuomo bridge and into steel nets below to keep debris from the Hudson River, according to the New York State Thruway Authority. Hunks of the bridge’s center section were already removed in May 2018.
Officials had planned to push the demolition to Sunday in case of rough weather, but Tappan Zee Constructors did not initally announce a new date for the big boom on Thursday.
The historic demolition generated buzz across the state with myriad livestreams set to document authorities’ triumphant toppling of the bridge. Several local restaurants were offering brunch deals with a view of the destruction, including the “Big Bang Brunch” at the Half Moon in Dobbs Ferry and “Dim-Sum-struction of the Tappan Zee Bridge” at Sambal Thai & Malay in Irvington.
Originally, officials had hoped to avoid the use of explosives that could harm fish habitats in the Hudson. But experts determined that the structure was unsound and prevented workers from dismantling the bridge piece by piece.
The new Mario M. Cuomo Bridge constructed directly adjacent to the Tappan Zee, which opened in August 2017, has replaced the more than half a century old connector.