Battery Park Underpass

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Eastern portal at the FDR Drive in front of the Battery Maritime Building
Western portal at the West Side Highway next to Battery Place
Western entrance from WSH

The Battery Park Underpass was the second section of Manhattan's Franklin D. Roosevelt East River Drive to be completed, opening to the public in April 1951.[1] It runs underneath Battery Park, connecting the West Side Highway to the South Street Viaduct with two lanes of traffic in each direction.

The project was completed shortly after the opening of the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel and provides direct access between the tunnel and the FDR Drive.[2] In 2005, during the reconstruction of Route 9A, the roof of the Battery Park Underpass was extended to the north by about 80 feet to provide a U-turn lane and amenities for pedestrians and bicyclists.[3]

During Superstorm Sandy, the tunnel filled completely with seawater and required major repairs.[citation needed]

Plans for extension[edit]

  • In 1971, it was suggested that the South Street Viaduct be turned into a tunnel, essentially extending the underpass north to the Brooklyn Bridge
  • In 2002, the Downtown Alliance, the local Business improvement district, called for a 350-foot (105 m) extension to the underpass to create a plaza in front of the Battery Maritime Building. The estimated cost was $70 million.[4]
  • In 2005, Mayor Michael Bloomberg also called for an extension of the underpass near the Battery Maritime Building as part of a plan to rehabilitate the South Street Viaduct.[5]


  1. ^ "City Opens Underpass at Battery, $10,000,000 Link in Express Route". The New York Times. April 11, 1951. p. 31. Retrieved 2010-04-12. 
  2. ^ Guide to Civil Engineering Projects In and Around New York City (2nd ed.). Metropolitan Section, American Society of Civil Engineers. 2009. pp. 61–62. 
  3. ^ Dunlap, David W. (November 2, 2005). "A Little Easier Getting Around Downtown". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-25. 
  4. ^ Dunlap, David W. (August 1, 2002). "Plans for the Neglected East River Shoreline". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-20. 
  5. ^ Dunlap, David W. (March 2, 2005). "Restoring a Missing Link: Lower Manhattan to the East River". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-25. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°42′09″N 74°00′58″W / 40.70250°N 74.01611°W / 40.70250; -74.01611