Williamsburg Bridge, By the Numbers

Home Brooklyn Life Williamsburg Bridge, By the Numbers
This is one busy bridge.
This is one busy bridge.

By Melanie Brisbon

The Brooklyn Bridge may have the acclaim, but the Williamsburg Bridge has the numbers.  The Williamsburg Bridge spans 7200 feet with 1600 feet between its towers, compared to the Brooklyn Bridge which is only 6,016 feet long. The Williamsburg Bridge also includes 17,500 miles of cable, which alone weigh 4,344 tons.

Though it has achieved landmark status and is a great tourist attraction, the Brooklyn Bridge is not the most traveled bridge in the City.  According to the 2009 Bridges and Tunnels Annual Report from the New York City Department of Transportation, approximately 206,783 people of whom106,783 are daily commuters, travel the Williamsburg bridge each day.   This bridge supported nearly 110,545 vehicles daily, compared with the Brooklyn Bridge which supports approximately 123,781 vehicles per day.

Aside from vehicles and pedestrians, the Williamsburg Bridge, unlike the Brooklyn Bridge, boasts three different subway transit lines. Manhattan bound and Brooklyn bound J, M and Z trains lines each traverse the bridge.  Nearly 100,000 people travel the Williamsburg Bridge each day via mass transit.  The Williamsburg Bridge has eight traffic lanes, two transit racks and a pedestrian foot walk between Manhattan and Brooklyn.  No trucks are allowed on the inner roadways due to weight restrictions.

All maintenance and structural upgrades for the bridge are managed and maintained by the transportation department’s bridges. Within the bridges division, separate sub divisions are in charge of managing specific functions.  There is a Preventative Maintenance Division, the Inspections and Bridge Management Division and the Bridge and Tunnel Operations division which operates 24 hour a day coverage.

Preventative maintenance is performed periodically to clean, check joints and preserve the bridge.

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