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Bridges, if we're not driving
or walking across them, then we're jumpin' off of them....'ok,
ok...maybe a select few. 'What can I say about 'em? 'They
were built with the intent of bridging the gap between our
boroughs and for the sake of thoroughfare. 'Personally, I
think they're wondrous! In looking up at them and crossing
them, and thinking about their immensity and greatness you
just can't help but be in awe. Of course if you happen to
be thinking about jumpin' off of one...well, what better way
to enjoy the waters after a nice dive...that is, if you manage
through the experience! No matter what, your ho-hum day can
be turned into a New Yorkled
day after walkin' across one.
Now, Although you may consider some of the smaller bridges
to not even be worth the mention, I thought I'd mention them
anyway...heck, they are what keep this city together...and
take my word, if you happened to be on your way out of the
city on a Friday afternoon or evening, you'll never forget
their existence!. 'That is, whether you manage to escape at
all. Oh yeah, I can remember the time when I was on my way
to 'Naaaah......you really don't want to hear it do you? Well,
take a look at some of the bigger bridges if you ignore the
Before you continue, 'would like to mention that the only bridges
really worth seeing in person are the Brooklyn & George
Washington Bridges. The Henry Hudson & Verrazano Bridges
would stand at distant thirds in my book...but definitely worth
a look only if you happen to be in the area, that is, if you
consider their beauty and the surrounding parks/promenades.
Broadway Bridge is a two level, vertical lift bridge with lanes
for automobile traffic on the lower level and El trains on the upper
level. It goes from just past 220th St. in Manhattan (a ten minute
walk from Inwood Hill Park and Baker
Field) and into the Bronx just south of 225th Street. This Bridge
carries the 1 & 9 train lines which are what you might take
if you were planning a trip to Van Courtlandt Park. Like most other
bridges in the city, you're allowed to walk across. 'hehe, it's
a short walk though!....
Construction Duration: 1959-1960 Total Length (including approaches):
557 feet Width: 84 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 6 # of Subway Tracks: 3 Steel used in Construction: 2,500
tons Cost to build: $13.4 million Clearance above water: 25 feet
to all traffic on February 22, 1889, a date which marked the President's
birthdate, was the Washington Heights Bridge. This steel-arch bridge
was to connect the Washington Heights section of Manhattan with
The bridge's ends are at: 181st St./Amsterdam Ave in Manhattan
& University Ave in The Bronx.
Construction Duration: 1886-1888
Total Length (including approaches):
2,375 feet Width: 66 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 6 Cost to build: $3 million Clearance above water: 151 feet
the growth in population and commerce at the time when it was built
in the northern Manhattan areas, there came a need to further connect
Manhattan with the Bronx. It was around this time, that is the late
1800's, that The Bronx' southern sections were becoming heavily
industrialized. With this need came the 145th St. swing Bridge.
This bridge's ends are at: 145th St. in Manhattan & 149th St.
in Manhattan. Just underneath this bridge within the ground is the
#2 train line.
Construction Duration: 1901-1905 Total Length (including
approaches): 1,603 feet Width: 90 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 4 lanes Steel used Construction: 2,372 tons Cost to build: $2.75 million Clearance above water: 25 feet
swing bridge crosses over the Harlem River to connect Manhattan
with the Bronx. There were many details involving the original building
of the bridge before it was rebuilt later on...these details will
come in time. The original structure was completed in 1885 and the
following one in 1910.
The bridge's ends are at: 138th St./Madison Ave in Manhattan &
138th St. in The Bronx.
Construction Duration: 1907-1910 Total Length (including approaches):
1,892 feet Width: Over 54 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 4 Cost to build: $2.2 million Clearance above water: 25 feet
many of the other small bridges, there are so many details involved
with this swing bridge...too many/too much to mention here. You
know, the usual politics and such involved in the building of the
Well what I can say is that this is probably the bridge I've crossed
over the most. Being situated in the Bronx and constantly finding
myself in Manhattan if not for work then for play.
What I always remembers is that this bridge has always been open
for thoroughfare, but always under some sort of construction. 'And,
everyone crosses it like a madman!.......yours truly included!.....It's
as if there were this unnerving yearning to get to the other side!
The bridge's ends are at: 129th St./3rd Ave in Manhattan &
Bruckner Boulevard in The Bronx.
Construction Duration: 1893-1898 Total Length (including approaches):
2,800 feet Width: 86 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 4 Steel used in Construction: 6,165
tons Cost to build: $4 million Clearance above water: 24 feet
thing about this swing bridge is that I've confused it so many times
for the 3rd Ave Bridge. Mainly because it's in the same area and
its Bronx entrances are so close to each other. For the longest
time I've thought them to be the same, even though i've crossed
over both so many times.
The bridge's ends are at: 125th St./1st Ave in Manhattan &
132nd St. in The Bronx.
Construction Duration: 1897-1901 Total Length (including approaches):
3,212 feet Width: 60 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 4 lanes Steel used in Construction: 6,213
tons Cost to build: $2.5 million Clearance above water: 24 feet
in 1936, the same year as the Henry Hudson Bridge, this suspension
bridge is really 3 bridges in one. The main part goes from Manhattan
onto Randall's Island at 125th St. & 1st Ave. then splits from
there on into the boroughs of The Bronx and Queens. This bridge
has some really fantastic views, and you could just imagine how,
since it crosses into 3 boroughs! 'But, and it's a big BUT...'from
Manhattan to Randalls Island, the bridge is 2,591 feet long, and
that's maybe a fraction of its total length which I would estimate
to be 2 1/2 miles.
Pedestrian entrances are located at: Hoyt Ave/26th St. in the Astoria
section of Queens; 124-126th St/2nd Ave in the Harlem section of
Manhattan; and, 134th St./Cypress Ave in the South Bronx section
of The Bronx.
Construction Duration: 1929-1936 Total Length (including approaches):
13,820 feet (for all 3 boroughs) Width: 98 feet # of Traffic Lanes: 6-8 Cost to build: $60.3 million Clearance above water: 25 feet
"Bridges." Dictionary of American History.
7 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, 1976. Reproduced in History Resource
Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale Group. http://www.galenet.com/servlet/HistRC/
Document Number: DJ2311021616