THE BRONX - Work is under way to replace the 106-year-old Willis Avenue Bridge, and the Department of Transportation claims it will have little impact on travel.

The city has installed pilings into the Harlem River next to the old bridge to support the entirely new structure. The DOT plans to place the new bridge on top of the pilings.

A direct connection to the northbound Major Deegan Expressway, new access ramps, wider lanes and an improved bicycle/pedestrian path are also in store.

About 70,000 vehicles travel across the bridge between the South Bronx and upper Manhattan daily. The DOT says the old structure is safe and will continue to be inspected once every six months until the new bridge opens.

Construction is expected to be done by December 2012.

Related information:New York City Department of Transportation