Thruway Names Tappan Zee Bridge Project Director

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Peter Sanderson will lead the team building the $3.9 billion bridge across the Hudson River.
Peter Sanderson will lead the team building the $3.9 billion bridge across the Hudson River. Photo Credit: Meredith Shamburger

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – A man hired to replace the Mississippi River Bridge in Minneapolis after it collapsed was named the project director in charge of replacing the Tappan Zee Bridge.

Peter Sanderson will lead the team building the $3.9 billion bridge across the Hudson River, the New York State Thruway Authority announced Wednesday.

“The project director will be responsible for keeping the New NY Bridge on schedule and within budget, and Peter Sanderson is an outstanding choice for this role because he has extensive experience and a proven track record,” Thruway Authority Chair Howard Milstein said in a statement. “Hiring an experienced project director is necessary and expected for a project of this size and complexity, and is generally viewed as an industry best practice.”

State officials are planning to build two parallel spans between Tarrytown and Nyack, about 300 feet north of the existing bridge, by 2018. The current Tappan Zee Bridge will be demolished around 2016.

Sanderson has more than 40 years of experience on bridge and design-build infrastructure projects. In addition to the Mississippi River Bridge, he has lead teams building the Sagadahoc Bridge in Maine and the Clark Bridge is St. Louis.

Officials praised the Thruway Authority’s decision Wednesday.

“Peter Sanderson’s vast engineering and construction experience, combined with his decades of experience leading complex infrastructure projects, make him the perfect chose to head the new NY Bridge initiative,” New York Building Congress President Richard T. Anderson said. “We at the Building Congress applaud the Cuomo administration for selecting an industry veteran with a sterling reputation for completing major projects on time and on budget. No single infrastructure project is more important to the long-term economic vitality of the entire downstate region than the construction of a safe, modern and larger capacity crossing to replace the obsolete Tappan Zee Bridge.”

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at last we have a real engineer on the tappan zee crossing, but does he have the open mind needed to do the project right? can he persuade the governor to support the tappan tunnel, with its great cost savings, speed, environmental benefits, and extendability, or will we just keep trying to design and pay for the useless bridges to nowhere?