Deconstruction of Bay Bridge is delayed

Alex Yang, Staff Writer

The deconstruction of the eastern span of the Bay Bridge that has just begun is already falling behind schedule.

The $239 million project, conducted by Caltrans, is now six months behind their projected finish date.

The deconstruction of the Bay Bridge, conducted by Caltrans, has been delayed.
The deconstruction of the Bay Bridge, conducted by Caltrans, has been delayed.

According to Andrew Gordon, the bridge project spokesman, Caltrans was so busy trying to get the new eastern span finished by last Labor Day weekend that they didn’t have time to secure the necessary demolition permits. Caltrans was not able to shift gears until after the opening of the new bridge in September.

This delay will set back the scheduled hookup of the popular bike and pedestrian path to Yerba Buena Island. Caltrans originally planned to have the old bridge out of the way and the bike path ready to be connected to Yerba Buena by early 2015.

Gordon said, “We are now looking at the summer of 2015.”

Another effect of the slow take down of the bridge is the increase of the cost of the demolition. Sources say that toll-payers will be expected to pay more when taking the new bridge.

Sophomore Nicholas Tsui said, “I think that [taking] down of the bridge is a bad choice. They should have just left it because it costs a lot of money to take it down. Now, since they have decided to continue with the project, they should at least do it quickly.”

Caltrans declined to comment publicly on how much it might cost to get the work back on track, citing negotiations with California Engineering Contractors and Silverado Construction, the two main contractors on the demolition’s first stage.

Sophomore Winson Luk said, “They should get the project finished as soon as possible because it has been delayed so many times already. Also, if they don’t take it down quickly enough, there can be a high risk of the bridge collapsing during an earthquake. I think they should work faster mainly focusing on the risk of people getting hurt, not the money it is costing.”

The deconstruction of the bridge is now scheduled to be completed between early 2015 to the middle of the year, although more delays are possible.