"When the Outerbridge Crossing opened in 1928, it was intended to meet the growing travel needs after World War I. Nearly 512,000 vehicles crossed the bridge in its first year. Today that many vehicles pass over the Outerbridge Crossing each week. The Outerbridge Crossing is a vital link for Staten Island drivers. This bipartisan legislation is an important step toward a modern bridge that can enhance safety and ease congestion. Assemblyman Reilly and I look forward to working with Governor Hochul, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and all stakeholders to advance this analysis to a shovel-ready project.
New legislation will require the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to examine the possibility of widening Staten Island’s narrowest bridge.
On Monday, Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation that directs the Port Authority to assess the alignment and surrounding property of the Outerbridge Crossing to determine the feasibility of widening the bridge in an effort to increase traffic flow at the oft-congested crossing.
“The Outerbridge Crossing is used by some 30 million vehicles a year and is a large part of daily life for New Yorkers on the South Shore of Staten Island, as well as the commuters from New Jersey who contribute so much to our state’s economy,” Hochul said.
“As it is currently built, the Outerbridge Crossing’s narrow lanes and inadequate traffic flow are a frequent commuter headache. With this legislation we hope to expedite the process of dramatically improving quality of life and enhancing safety for commuters from New York and New Jersey alike,” the governor added.
The Port Authority first began evaluating the possibility of widening the Outerbridge Crossing back in April 2018.
As part of that ongoing study, the new legislation will require the Port Authority to examine the alignment of the bridge and determine which nearby private properties would have to be acquired in order to complete a potential expansion.