Residents Believe Bayonne Bridge Project Is Damaging Their Homes
BAYONNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Residents living near the Bayonne Bridge claim their homes are being damaged by the massive four-year elevation construction project.
Work to raise the span is vibrating windows and walls, splitting plaster, shifting door frames and filling the air with dust, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.
“There was a crack where the banisters are, but now the pieces are falling off,” said Lucia Frazier, who lives on Avenue A. “All the cement in between the bricks are starting to get loose and I think it’s from the rattling.”
Frazier said the neighborhood is also a dusty, muddy mess.
“I have a white Pekingese, every time I take him out he’s really cute and white, and it turns all dirty, it’s just disgusting,” she said.
The Port Authority has offered to install noise-dampening windows and to survey homes to monitor for damage, the Jersey Journal reported.
The Port Authority is offering $10,000 to each resident in the area to compensate them for any losses, 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reported. City officials are warning residents to read the fine print so they don’t give up any future rights to sue, Adams reported.
The agency has also offered to put some of the families up in hotels, but Frazier said that’s not an option for her.
“I have my 86-year-old mother living with me,” Frazier said. “She needs stability.”
Things are no better on the Staten Island side of the span, CBS 2’s Andrea Grymes reported.
“The noise to me feels almost as if they’re coming and wrecking the house with a wrecking ball,” resident John Ortiz told Grymes.
“We need help. This is ridiculous,” Odilia Ramirez added.
Staten Islanders said noise is just one of many problems.
There was flooding when crews busted a fire hydrant and residents said the water has been shut off for 8 hours a day for two weeks while a new water main is installed.
“We have to consider how we use the water to conserve and make sure that we have enough to flush toilets, to wash dishes, etc.,” Mildred Mendez told Grymes.
Residents said construction crews have been leaving bottled water on their porches each morning due to the inconvenience. A Port Authority spokesperson said it’s the least they can do and promised water will be back up and running normally by the week of April 14.
Locals said the agency also promised it would supply them with parking.
A spokesperson admits they’re still working on a long-term solution. They are considering renting a nearby school parking lot for the summer.
The $1.3 billion “Raise the Roadway” construction project will raise the 82-year-old bridge’s roadway by 64 feet to accommodate larger cargo ships.
The new roadway will also have wider lanes, a median and a bike and pedestrian path.
The project is expected to be complete in 2017.
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