NEWTOWN CREEK — "Energetic felling?" "Implosion?"
Call it what you want, but the old Kosciuszko Bridge was brought down Sunday morning with a bang that could be heard for miles around.
The explosion took place just after 8 a.m., with 22 million pounds of steel from the 3,100-foot span cascading to the banks of the Newtown Creek in less than a second.
"On a scale of one to 10, it went 11," said Mark Loizeaux, president of Controlled Demolition, Inc. who ran the operation. "It went absolutely perfect."
The demolition of the old bridge will clear space for contractors to begin construction on the second span of the new Kosciuszko Bridge, slated to be completed in 2020.
The first half of the new bridge was unveiled in April and currently east and westward traffic travels over it, though when the full bridge is completed it will only carry Queens-bound vehicles.
The state DOT rescheduled the date of the explosion for months and couched the demolition in euphemistic terms like, "energetic felling."
Governor Andrew Cuomo, who watched the explosion aboard a boat on Newtown Creek along with a crowd of elected officials and reporters, even joked about it, calling it "a new politically correct way to say implosion."
Leading up to the explosion, crowds of onlookers gathered on the banks of the Newtown Creek to watch, some lined up across the Greenpoint Avenue Bridge overlooking the creek.
"It's not every day that you get to see a bridge blow up," said a giddy 12-year-old Lazer Gelfand, who watched from bank of the creek. "Who would not want to see this?"
Joe Riggs, 32, brought his 17-month-old daughter Delia to watch the bridge come down.
"I wanted to see big things explode," he said. "I'll be glad to see it gone."
The sound of the massive explosion could be heard for miles around in Brooklyn and Queens and caused dogs to bark, car alarms to set off and buildings to wobble, according Twitter users.