Wantagh State Parkway

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Wantagh State Parkway marker

Wantagh State Parkway
Map of Nassau County on Long Island with Wantagh State Parkway highlighted in red
Route information
Length: 13.33 mi[3] (21.45 km)
Existed: August 4, 1929[1] – present
History: First section opened August 4, 1929[1]
Full length completed on December 17, 1938[2]
Major junctions
South end: Ocean Parkway in Jones Beach State Park
  Southern State Parkway in North Wantagh
North end: Northern State Parkway in Westbury
Location
Counties: Nassau
Highway system

The Wantagh State Parkway is a 13.33-mile (21 km) state parkway on Long Island, New York, in the United States. It links the Ocean Parkway at Jones Beach State Park with the Northern State Parkway in Westbury. The parkway is located approximately 30 miles (48 km) east of Manhattan and 14 miles (23 km) east of the NassauQueens border. Construction began in 1927 on this, one of the earliest of the Long Island parkways, with the initial 5-mile (8 km) segment opening two years later connecting Merrick Road in Wantagh to newly opened Jones Beach State Park. It is inventoried by the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) as New York State Route 908T (NY 908T), an unsigned reference route.

Route description[edit]

Approaching Jones Beach on the Wantagh State Parkway south as seen from Bay Parkway

The Wantagh State Parkway begins at a traffic circle with the Ocean Parkway in Jones Beach State Park just north of the Atlantic Ocean shoreline. The Parkway proceeds northward as a six-lane divided parkway, passing several large parking lots serving the state park, and soon crossing under Bay Parkway before bending northeast into an unnumbered interchange with the Bay Parkway. The parkway expands to eight lanes as it bends northeast through Jones Beach State Park, intersecting with several u-turn ramps between directions. As the parkway makes a large bend to the northwest, it gains elevation and reduces to five lanes, crossing over the nearby waterway via a bridge. After crossing, the Wantagh State lands on Green Island, being northeast past a tollbooth that is only applied southbound. After the tollbooth, the parkway returns to six lanes and crosses the waterway again, landing on Great Island.[4]

The Wantagh State Parkway remains six-lanes across Great Island, crossing west of a bicycle path that follows the northbound lanes before bending northwest over the water once again finally into mainland Long Island. After crossing onto Long Island, the parkway proceeds north as a six-lane freeway, passing west of Cedar Creek County Park in the community of South Wantagh. The parkway soon enters downtown South Wantagh and becomes surrounded with residential homes on side streets, soon entering exit W6. Exit W6 serves as a junction between the Wantagh and Merrick Road. After the interchange, the Wantagh State turns northwest, crossing over Merrick Road into Millpond County Park. There, the parkway bends northeast, running along the eastern edge of the park into exit W5, which connects the parkway to NY 27 (Sunrise Highway).[4]

The Wantagh State Parkway northbound at the junction with the Southern State Parkway

After the ramps for exit W5 W, the Wantagh State Parkway continues north through Wantagh, crossing under tracks maintained by the Long Island Rail Road. The parkway now runs along the eastern edge of the Twin Lakes Preserve, passing Seaman Pond as it bends northwest into the Forest Lake section. The parkway passes a large cemetery and Wantagh High School before crossing under NY 105 (Jerusalem Avenue). After NY 105, the parkway bends northeast once again, entering exit W4, which connects to the Southern State Parkway. After the Southern State, the Wantagh continues reduces down to four lanes through the community of North Wantagh. The parkway continues northwest, crossing under North Jerusalem Road after leaving North Wantagh.[4]

Now in Levittown, the Wantagh State Parkway passes west of McLaren Memorial Park and continues northeast into an interchange with NY 24 (Hempstead Turnpike), where the parkway becomes four undivided lanes. A short distance later, the parkway crosses under NY 106 (North Newbridge Road). The parkway bends north, passing several transformers before crossing into the town of Oyster Bay. In the town of Oyster Bay, the parkway enters exit W2, which serves Old Country Road right after crossing back into Hempstead. After exit W2, the Wantagh State Parkway continues northwest, crossing over another Long Island Rail Road line into the North Hempstead section. Soon crossing into Jericho Gardens, the parkway proceeds northwest into exit W1, which is an interchange with the Northern State Parkway's exit 33. This interchange serves as the northern terminus of the Wantagh, as its northbound lanes merge into the Northern State.[4]

History[edit]

The original section of the parkway, then known as the Jones Beach Causeway, opened on August 4, 1929, along with Jones Beach State Park, running from Merrick Road in Wantagh to Jones Beach Island.[1] The parkway was extended northward to Southern State Parkway in July 1932 and to Northern State Parkway in December 1938.[5][6] A formerly proposed extension to Interstate 495 (the Long Island Expressway) has been on the books since the late 1950s.[7]

Upon completion of the southern extension of the Seaford–Oyster Bay Expressway (NY 135), Wantagh State Parkway was to be renamed Jones Beach Causeway between NY 135 and Ocean Parkway.[8] Many have erroneously referred to Loop Parkway as the Jones Beach Causeway, most notably in Mario Puzo's 1969 novel The Godfather.[9][according to whom?]

Exit list[edit]

The entire route is in Nassau County.

Location Mile[3] km Exit Destinations Notes
Jones Beach
State Park
0.00 0.00 Ocean Parkway to Meadowbrook Parkway Southern terminus at a traffic circle
Bay Parkway west – Jones Beach Theater, West End Beaches Eastern terminus of the Bay Parkway
Toll booth (southbound only)
South Oyster Bay Jones Beach Causeway
Wantagh 5.05 8.13 W6 Merrick Road (CR 27) – Seaford, Bellmore Signed as W6E (east) and W6W (west) southbound; northbound trucks and buses must exit
5.75 9.25 W5 NY 27 – New York, Montauk Signed as W5E (east) and W5W (west)
North Wantagh 7.63 12.28 W4 Southern State Parkway – Great River, New York Signed as W4E (east) and W4W (west)
Levittown 9.65 15.53 W3 NY 24 (Hempstead Turnpike) – Farmingdale, Hempstead Signed as W3E (east) and W3W (west)
Westbury 12.12 19.51 W2 Old Country Road (CR 25) / Country Road – Plainview, Carle Place Signed as W2E (east) and W2W (west)
W1 Brush Hollow Road (CR 63) – Westbury Southbound exit and entrance; northbound access via Northern Parkway exit 34
13.33 21.45 Northern State Parkway to Brush Hollow Road – New York, Hauppauge Northern terminus; exit 33 on Northern Parkway
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Jones Beach Park to Open Tomorrow". The New York Times. August 3, 1929. p. 5. Retrieved April 24, 2010. 
  2. ^ "New Parkway Link Opened in Nassau". The New York Times. December 18, 1938. p. 51. 
  3. ^ a b "2008 Traffic Data Report for New York State" (PDF). New York State Department of Transportation. June 16, 2009. p. 339. Retrieved January 22, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b c d Microsoft. "overview map of the Wantagh State Parkway". Bing Maps (Map). Cartography by Nokia. http://binged.it/NljaeS. Retrieved June 7, 2012.
  5. ^ "New Wantagh Spur Opened by Lehman; Crowd Sees Acting Governor Turn $1,500,000 Link to Jones Beach Over to Public". The New York Times. July 17, 1932. p. 2. Retrieved April 24, 2010. 
  6. ^ "New Parkway Link Opened in Nassau; Smith Cuts Ribbon and With Moses Leads Way from Westbury to Jones Beach". The New York Times. December 18, 1938. p. 51. Retrieved April 24, 2010. 
  7. ^ Anderson, Steve. "Wantagh State Parkway". NYCRoads. Retrieved March 18, 2010. 
  8. ^ Old Hagstrom's Maps of Nassau County, New York, as well as Metropolitan Suburban Bus Authority maps, and other maps.[vague]
  9. ^ Puzo, Mario (1969). The Godfather. G. P. Putnam's Sons. pp. 253–254. ISBN 0451217403. Retrieved February 25, 2013. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing