Traffic Accident On Pierrepont Tests Scaffolding Integrity

A cadre of fire engines and police cars gathered at the scene of a minor traffic accident in Brooklyn Heights late Sunday afternoon at 25 Pierrepont Street, after an Acura SUV drove onto the curb and hit a corner pole supporting scaffolding on the building. Bordering the second floor of the residential building and wrapping around the corner onto Willow, the scaffolding was markedly askew from street level.

The male driver and a female companion were at the scene, talking with police officers. Neither was hurt and no charges had been filed by 6 p.m. Fire crews, meanwhile, were inside the entrance making contact with building management. Photos below.

(Photos: Chuck Taylor)

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  • T.K. Small

    When the accident occurred, I heard a huge crash noise from my apartment at 55 Pierrepont St. Immediately I thought it was the scaffolding on the corner of Willow/Pierrepont. I’m just glad that no one seems to have been hurt.

  • Matthew Parker

    Just passed by there at 7:30pm. There’s one fireman supervising a small crew dismantling the Pierrepont St. side of the scaffolding. Looks like the fireman was also escorting residents in and out of the building.

  • stuart

    for the record, this is not scaffolding, it’s a sidewalk bridge. Glad it didn’t fall and hurt anyone.

  • David on Middagh

    Just to engage in one of the most pointless arguments one could have on the Internet, I’ll assert that the aforementioned structure appears to comprise both a wooden platform for the support of workers and their materials (if only to keep the materials from inadvertently materializing upon a pedestrian’s head) and a support structure for that platform, which together may be said to compose scaffolding. That’s not to say it isn’t also a sidewalk bridge.

  • stuart

    David, a sidewalk bridge does not support workers as they work on the building. it just protects pedestrians from falling objects.
    workers will actually repair the building from drop scaffolds that will be lowered from the roof.

  • T.K. Small

    According to Merriam-Webster, this structure seems to meet the definition of a scaffold.

  • Eddyenergizer

    A scaffold by any other name… would it function the same?
    Stuart & David on Middagh are both right. Scaffold is the larger term that encompasses many types of temporary work platforms & protective structures. A Sidewalk Bridge is a specific type of scaffold used primarily to protect the street/sidewalk but is usually used to stage work from as well. Stuart, although, “Bridge” is an acceptable term “Shed” is the more common nomenclature for such a structure, here in NYC.

  • JC

    That’s called a “shed” not a scaffold. A very common mistake.

  • JC

    A scaffold is the metal structure that is placed along the face of the building – usually up to the top. Anything along a sidewalk with the wood top is referred to as a “shed”

  • BH’er

    potato/patahtoh, when are we going to see workers working on the building so we can have our sidewalk back?

    (and, apparently, a safe corner again)

    i have a feeling the external structure (by whatever name) may as well be written into the deed and made permanent. it has been there for months without a single worker to be seen

  • Eddyenergizer

    JC, Not necessarily a “mistake” Please read my previous post for clarification.

    BH’er, Get used to it. The lifespan of a shed/scaffold is usually measured in years not months.

  • lori

    Scaffold/bridge/shed – a pointless discussion. I remember when this was put up (erected) one evening from 8 PM to 11 PM. There were lots of complaints on the blog about the owner of the building and the scaffolding company HOWEVER, the real story is that something (brick, cement, whatever) had fallen off the building and the City Bldgs Dept came and had one of their contractors erect the scaffolding at that hour. Another incicdent of people complaining when they don’t know the whole story. I agree with BH’r – I am tired of avoiding all these structures on my springtime walks. The work should be done and then we can get our sidewalk back.

  • lori

    PS – nice pix, Chuck. And you were very timely with the posting. Thanks.

  • Eddyenergizer

    lori, If people are making points in a discussion, it is not a “pointless discussion”….

  • GHB

    I was hoping that when this structure went up, that the building would work on fixing their broken, cracked sidewalk. The Willow Street sidewalk is a lawsuit just waiting to happen!

  • Joe

    Do you know if the scaffold was removed or reinforced? How do the residents come in and out?

  • Banville

    Yes, the shed/whatever has been up for months with not a worker in sight. Seems to be a poorly managed/maintained building.

  • Gerry

    This building has been a disaster for the 30 years I have been in Brooklyn Heights nothing ever changes with this building.

  • liam

    when i went outside to view the accident, a couple of the spectators told me that the woman was being given driving lessons by her companion,
    when i walked over to wher they were standing a cop was giving them,what seemed to be, multiple summonses.

  • stuart

    These bridges are often put up with no plans to do any work on the building unlike scaffolding, which is specifically built for doing repairs.
    A piece of cornice fell off this building a while back. hence the sidewalk bridge.
    This is an unfortunate building. Similar to 100 Clark Street. It houses die-hard rent-control types who would rather see their building fall to the ground than pay an extra quarter in rent. I do not foresee a happy ending.

  • BH’er

    is it possible to compel action torepair the building and remove the scaffolding thru litigation, BHA action or any other agencies?

  • Patrick

    To get accurate info on the Scaffolding\Sidewalk bridge\Shed
    this website is good for that.


  • Banville

    BH’er Interesting question. Does anyone know?