Commuters have put up with a lot during the construction of the new Mario M. Cuomo Bridge connecting Westchester and Rockland County's. Finally this Friday night drivers can take to the bridge for the first time.

It's been a long time coming, but finally this Friday commuters heading from Westchester to Rockland will be able to use the newly constructed Mario M. Cuomo Bridge for the very first time.

According to, the shift is on from the old Tappan Zee Bridge to the new Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge. The New York State Thruway Authority has released details, and weather permitting, traffic will start flowing over the bridge this Friday night. By the way the rain date for the opening is Saturday (8/26).

Now don't expect traffic to get better anytime soon. This shift is the first of a number of phases that will be happening before the bridge is in full use. For now the Thruway Authority is only opening one of the two new spans. Commuters will have to wait till the Fall until the Westchester bound lanes will be open, and have an even longer wait until sometime in 2018 before the entire bridge will be open to all traffic.

Here are the details regarding Friday nights traffic shift from the Thruway Authority. Multiple lane closures will begin sometime after 9 pm Friday and at least one Rockland bound lane will remain open except when State Police stop and hold traffic early Saturday morning. There will also be multiple traffic stops at exits prior to the bridge both Friday night and Saturday morning.

Even after the bridge is operational to traffic in both directions, multiple stops, and the current traffic patterns will still be in effect until the completion of the entire bridge project in 2018.

The New York Thruway Authority estimates that some 50 million vehicles used the Tappan Zee Bridge in 2016.

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