Gothamist reports that the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation has begun a lawsuit against HNTB Corporation and HNTB New York Engineering and Architecture, P.C., designers and contract administrators for the Squibb Park Pedestrian Bridge, which opened in March of 2013 but which was closed in August of 2014 and has remained closed since. According to the complaint, appended to the Gothamist article, filed in Supreme Court, New York County by BBPC’s attorney, the Corporation Counsel of the City of New York, the design of the bridge was “defective.” The complaint alleges breach of contract and professional malpractice on the part of the HNTB defendants, and seeks damages “in an amount to be determined at trial, but not less than $3 million.”
The Gothamist piece quotes BBPC spokesperson Belinda Cape: “[I]t has become clear that [HNTB] was either unwilling or unable to provide a workable solution to fix the bridge, and that its design was inherently flawed.” She also says BBPC has hired Arup to replace HNTB as the new engineer of record for the bridge project. According to Brownstoner’s story on the BBPC lawsuit, Arup has six months to draw up plans to fix the bridge, and those plans must then be approved by BBPC’s board, so it is unlikely that the bridge will re-open anytime soon. Brownstoner also says thae amount of damages claimed is $6 million, not $3 million, although the complaint, which is also appended to the Brownstoner story, says $3 million.