Spuyten Duyvil Bridge

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Spuyten Duyvil Bridge
Spuyten Duyvil Swing Bridge from Inwood, Manhattan.jpg
Spuyten Duyvil Swing Bridge from Inwood, Manhattan
Carries Amtrak Empire Corridor (1 track)
Crosses Spuyten Duyvil Creek
Locale Manhattan and the Bronx, in New York City
Design Swing bridge
Total length 610 feet (190 m)[1]
Longest span 286 feet (87 m)[2]
Clearance below 5 feet (1.5 m)[1]
Opened 1900

The Spuyten Duyvil Bridge is a swing bridge that carries Amtrak's Empire Corridor line across the Spuyten Duyvil Creek between Manhattan and the Bronx, in New York City. The bridge is located at the northern tip of Manhattan where the Spuyten Duyvil Creek meets the Hudson River, approximately 1,000 feet (300 m) to the west of the Henry Hudson Bridge. It was built to carry two tracks, but now carries only a single track on the east side of the bridge.[2]

A wooden railroad bridge across the Spuyten Duyvil was first constructed by the New York & Hudson River Railroad in 1849.[3] The current steel bridge was designed by Robert Giles and constructed in 1900; the piers rest on pile foundations in the riverbed.[1][4] Trains stopped running across the bridge in 1982 and the following year the bridge was damaged by a vessel and left stuck in the open position.[5]

The bridge was rehabilitated in the late 1980s and Amtrak's Empire Service began using the Spuyten Duyvil Bridge on April 7, 1991, following the completion of the Empire Connection. This involved the conversion of the abandoned West Side Line to accommodate passenger service and connect with Pennsylvania Station. Up until then, Amtrak trains traveling between New York and Albany had utilized Grand Central Terminal.[1][6][7]

The bridge is used by approximately 30 trains per day and is opened over 1,000 times per year, primarily during the summer months for Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises and recreational vessels.[2]

Bridge in 1936 during the construction of the Henry Hudson Bridge.


  • On the evening of February 16, 2004, an 80-year-old woman mistakenly drove her car onto the bridge from the Bronx side of the river and was hit by a Toronto-bound Amtrak train. Although the passenger train slammed into the automobile and carried it for a distance of 250 feet (76 m) along the tracks, the woman survived the crash.[8]
  • During the early morning hours of October 24, 2010, a fire broke out on the bridge, suspending train service until later that evening. During the bridge closure, Amtrak trains terminated at Croton-Harmon, where bus service was provided between Pennsylvania Station and passengers could transfer to the Metro-North Railroad for access to and from Grand Central Terminal.[9][10]
  • On December 1, 2013, a railway derailment happened near the bridge on the Bronx side, killing 4.


Spuyten Duyvil Bridge, Bronx end, when the swing is open
  1. ^ a b c d Gray, Christopher (March 6, 1988). "Spuyten Duyvil Swing Bridge; Restoring a Link In the City's Lifeline". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 
  2. ^ a b c Rolwood, Craig; Ostrovsky, Alex (2004). "Spuyten Duyvil Emergency Response to Navigation Strikes" (PDF). Conference Proceedings (American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association). Retrieved 2011-07-04. 
  3. ^ Adams, Arthur G. (1996). The Hudson River Guidebook (2nd ed.). New York: Fordham University Press. p. 113. ISBN 0-8232-1680-2. 
  4. ^ Geological Society of America (1905). Bulletin of the Geological Society of America 16. Rochester: Geological Society of America. p. 157. Retrieved 2010-03-20. 
  5. ^ Renner, James (March 2001). "Spuyten Duyvil Swing Bridge". Washington Heights & Inwood Online. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  6. ^ Johnson, Kirk (July 7, 1988). "Amtrak Trains To Stop Using Grand Central". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 
  7. ^ "Travel Advisory; Grand Central Trains Rerouted To Penn Station". The New York Times. April 7, 1991. Retrieved 2009-07-26. 
  8. ^ Sclafani, Tony; Standora, Leo (February 17, 2004). "Amtrak Hits Car Driving on Tracks". Daily News (New York). Retrieved 2013-02-06. 
  9. ^ "Spuyten Duyvil Bridge Burned Over Weekend". The Riverdale Press. October 25, 2010. Retrieved 2011-07-03. 
  10. ^ Anderson, Eric (October 24, 2010). "Amtrak Service to NYC Restored". Times Union (Albany). Retrieved 2011-07-03. 

External links[edit]

Aerial view with the Henry Hudson Bridge in the foreground

Coordinates: 40°52′42″N 73°55′32″W / 40.87833°N 73.92556°W / 40.87833; -73.92556