Henry Hudson Bridge

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Henry Hudson Bridge
Henry Hudson Bridge.jpg
Aerial view
Official name Henry Hudson Bridge
Carries 7 lanes (3 upper, 4 lower) of NY 9A, (Henry Hudson Parkway)
Crosses Spuyten Duyvil Creek
Locale Spuyten Duyvil, Bronx and Inwood, Manhattan, New York City
Maintained by MTA Bridges and Tunnels
Designer David B. Steinman
Design Double-decker arch bridge
Total length 2208 ft (673 m)
Width 3 lanes (upper deck)
4 lanes (lower deck)
Longest span 841 ft (256 m)
Vertical clearance 12 feet
Clearance below 143 ft (44 m)
Opened December 12, 1936
Toll $5.00 (mail); $2.44 (New York State E-ZPass) (cashless tolls)
Daily traffic 63,434 (2012)[1]
Coordinates 40°52′40″N 73°55′18″W / 40.877861°N 73.921777°W / 40.877861; -73.921777Coordinates: 40°52′40″N 73°55′18″W / 40.877861°N 73.921777°W / 40.877861; -73.921777
Henry Hudson Bridge is located in New York City
Henry Hudson Bridge
Henry Hudson Bridge

The Henry Hudson Bridge is a steel arch toll bridge in New York City across the Spuyten Duyvil Creek. It connects Spuyten Duyvil in the Bronx with Inwood in Manhattan to the south. On the Manhattan side, it touches Inwood Hill Park. Commercial vehicles are not permitted on this bridge, since it carries the Henry Hudson Parkway, which is a parkway, where commercial vehicles are not accepted.

Design[edit]

The bridge was designed by David B. Steinman, drawing upon his 1911 Ph.D. thesis in civil engineering at Columbia University.[2][3] Named to commemorate the voyage of Henry Hudson on the Half Moon, which anchored near the site in 1609,[4][5] it was the longest plate girder arch and fixed arch bridge in the world when it opened in 1936.[4]

The bridge has two roadway levels carrying an aggregate of seven traffic lanes and a pedestrian walkway and spans Spuyten Duyvil Creek just east of where the tidal strait meets the Hudson River.[6] The bridge is part of the Henry Hudson Parkway placarded as New York State Route 9A. To its west, at five feet above water level, is the Spuyten Duyvil Bridge, which is used by Amtrak trains heading to Albany, New York and other points north. The Spuyten Duyvil Metro-North station is located under Henry Hudson bridge on the Bronx side.

The bridge under construction in June 1936.
The underside of Henry Hudson Bridge, looking North
View from a boat looking west, toward the Hudson River and the Palisades.

History[edit]

A bridge at this location was proposed as early as 1906, but Spuyten Duyvil residents and other civic groups opposed the bridge, arguing that it would destroy the virgin forest of Inwood Hill Park and bring traffic congestion to the communities on the Bronx side of the river. Meanwhile, Robert Moses preferred the route along the Hudson River because he was able to receive the land to build the Henry Hudson Parkway at no cost and use federal labor to construct the parkway.[7][8] The construction of the bridge helped open the Riverdale neighborhood to development.[9]

The original single-deck structure was built for the Henry Hudson Parkway Authority by the American Bridge Company at a cost of $4,949,000 and opened to traffic on December 12, 1936.[4][10] The upper level of the bridge was designed to be added at a later date and opened to traffic on May 7, 1938.[11] The second deck was added an additional cost of approximately $2,000,000, after increasing toll revenues enabled its construction.[7]

The bridge is owned by the City of New York and operated by the MTA Bridges and Tunnels, an affiliate agency of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. A rehabilitation project commenced in 2000 and is being carried out by Steinman, Boynton, Gronquist and Birdsall a successor firm of Robinson & Steinman, the firm that originally designed and engineered the bridge.

In January 2010, the MTA announced that it is planning to implement a pilot program on the Henry Hudson Bridge to phase out toll booths and use open road tolling. In January 20, 2011, this toll pilot project got underway.[12][13][14] Drivers without E-ZPass would be sent a bill in the mail starting November 10, 2012.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2012 New York City Bridge Traffic Volumes". Retrieved 2014-09-23. 
  2. ^ Weingardt, Richard (2005). Engineering Legends: Great American Civil Engineers: 32 Profiles of Inspiration and Achievement. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engineers. p. 68. ISBN 0-7844-0801-7. 
  3. ^ Reier, Sharon (2000). The Bridges of New York. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications. pp. 132–134. ISBN 0-486-41230-X. 
  4. ^ a b c "Henry Hudson Bridge". MTA Bridges and Tunnels. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  5. ^ McNamara, John (1984). History in Asphalt: The Origin of Bronx Street and Place Names. Bronx, NY: Bronx County Historical Society. p. 104. ISBN 0-941980-16-2. 
  6. ^ Sheraton, Mimi (April 2, 1999). "Seven Strolls In the Sky". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  7. ^ a b Gray, Christopher (August 10, 2003). "Henry Hudson Bridge; A Controversial '36 Span Through Dreamy Isolation". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  8. ^ "For A Henry Hudson Bridge; Board of Estimate Will Approve $2,000,000 To-day to Build It". The New York Times. April 6, 1906. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  9. ^ Garb, Margaret (March 1, 1998). "If You're Thinking of Living In Riverdale, the Bronx; A Community Jealous of Its Open Space". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  10. ^ "The New Parkways". The New York Times. December 12, 1936. Retrieved 2010-02-21. 
  11. ^ "Henry Hudson Span Opens Upper Level". The New York Times. May 8, 1938. Retrieved 2010-02-21. 
  12. ^ Mancini, John (January 20, 2011). "Henry Hudson Span Goes "Gateless" - NY1". NY1. Retrieved 2014-07-13. 
  13. ^ "Henry Hudson Bridge Toll Pilot". MTA YouTube website. January 20, 2011. Retrieved 2011-01-20. 
  14. ^ "MTA | news | Gate Free E-ZPass on the Henry Hudson Reducing Travel Time". MTA.info. February 22, 2011. Retrieved 2014-07-13. 
  15. ^ "Cashless tolls at the Henry Hudson Bridge". MTA Bridges and Tunnels. Retrieved 2012-10-03. 

External links[edit]