Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge

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Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge
The bridge, with the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge visible in the background
Coordinates 40°34′24.4″N 73°53′5.8″W / 40.573444°N 73.884944°W / 40.573444; -73.884944Coordinates: 40°34′24.4″N 73°53′5.8″W / 40.573444°N 73.884944°W / 40.573444; -73.884944
Carries 4 lanes of Flatbush Avenue
Crosses Jamaica Bay
Locale Brooklyn and Queens, New York
Maintained by MTA Bridges and Tunnels
Design Vertical lift
Total length 4,022 feet (1,225.9 m)[1]
Longest span 540 feet (164.6 m)[1]
Clearance above 13 feet (3.9 m)
Clearance below 55 feet (17 m) at mean high water; 150 feet (46 m) in raised position
Opened July 3, 1937 [1]
Daily traffic 21,690 (2010)[2]
Toll As of March 19, 2017, $4.25 (Tolls by Mail) ; $2.16 (New York E-ZPass)
Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge is located in New York City
Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge
Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge
Location in New York City

The Marine Parkway–Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge (originally and often referred to as the Marine Parkway Bridge) is a vertical-lift bridge in New York City, New York, that crosses Rockaway Inlet and connects the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens, with Flatbush Avenue to Floyd Bennett Field, Belt Parkway, and the Marine Park neighborhood in Brooklyn. Opened on July 3, 1937, it carries four motor traffic lanes, and a footpath on the western edge.[3] The center span is raised and lowered 100 times a year to allow vessels to pass beneath the roadway; it is 540 feet (160 m) long and is only 55 feet (17 m) above the water but can be lifted to a height of 150 feet above the water. Cyclepaths along both sides of the Parkway connect northward to Brooklyn. The operation of this bridge includes the maintenance of the Marine Parkway from the toll plaza to Jacob Riis Park. Though a city-owned and operated bridge, it connects two parts of Gateway National Recreation Area, a unit of the National Park System: Floyd Bennett Field and Jacob Riis Park. The bridge is designated as New York State Route 901B, an unsigned reference route.[4]

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.

With its distinctive twin towers (which house the vertical-lift machinery), the bridge has become an iconic landmark and symbol of the Rockaways.[5]


Starting on March 19, 2017, drivers will pay $4.25 per car or $3.50 per motorcycle for cash / tolls by mail. E‑ZPass users with transponders issued by the New York E‑ZPass pay $2.16 per car or $1.80 per motorcycle.[6]

Open-road cashless tolling began on April 30, 2017 at 3 am. The tollbooths will be gradually dismantled, and drivers will no longer be able to pay cash at the bridge. Instead, there will be cameras mounted onto new overhead gantries near where the booths are currently located.[7][8] Drivers without E-ZPass will have a picture of their license plate taken, and the toll will be mailed to them. For E-ZPass users, sensors will detect their transponders wirelessly.[7][8] Cashless tolls can improve traveling time at the crossings just in time for summer traveling season. Residents with leftover bridge tokens will be eligible to redeem their tokens for a refund. However, cash and metal tokens are no longer accepted on the bridges after April 29, 2017.


View of the roadway
From Riis Landing
American Airlines Flight 587, circled in white, can briefly be seen in this video still moving downward with a white streak behind the aircraft. This video, released by the NTSB, was recorded by a toll-booth camera located on the bridge.
Marine Parkway Bridge facing south

Designed by Emil Praeger of the engineering firm Madigan-Hyland, the bridge was constructed by the American Bridge Company and opened by the Marine Parkway Authority in 1937, becoming the longest vertical-lift span in the world for automobiles at that time. The curled tops of the towers were designed to give the bridge a whimsical aspect. Following the 1940 merger of the Marine Parkway Authority and Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority, the operation of the bridge fell to TBTA.[9]

In 1978, the bridge was renamed for Gil Hodges, the former first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers.[9] Hodges kept a residence in Brooklyn after his team moved to Los Angeles. He also played for the Queens-based New York Mets at the end of his career, and managed the Mets from 1968 until his sudden death in 1972, including victory in the 1969 World Series.

In 1999, the existing steel-grated roadway deck on the lift span was replaced with a new steel grating. A new, aluminum extrusion, ("Jersey") barrier was also installed to separate opposing traffic flows. In addition, the elevators and electrical systems in the two towers were replaced, and new variable message signs and traffic control devices were installed on the bridge, approach roadways, and toll plaza. The toll plaza also received a brand-new service building.

Part of the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 in 2001 was filmed from a tollbooth camera on this bridge.[10]

On November 24, 2014, the bridge experienced a power failure while it was raised to let a boat pass. It remained stuck in the raised position for about six hours before technicians were able to lower it.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge at Structurae. Retrieved on May 14, 2013.
  2. ^ "2010 Traffic Data Report for New York State" (PDF). New York State Department of Transportation. Appendix C. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 27, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Our Newest Bridge". The New York Times. July 3, 1937. p. 14. Retrieved November 8, 2007. 
  4. ^ Perry, N.W. "NYS Reference Routes, Regions 10 and 11". Empire State Roads. Retrieved November 8, 2007. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "2017 Toll Information". MTA Bridges & Tunnels. Retrieved March 16, 2017. 
  7. ^ a b Siff, Andrew (2016-10-05). "Automatic Tolls to Replace Gates at 9 NYC Spans: Cuomo". NBC New York. Retrieved 2016-12-25. 
  8. ^ a b WABC (2016-12-21). "MTA rolls out cashless toll schedule for bridges, tunnels". ABC7 New York. Retrieved 2016-12-25. 
  9. ^ a b "Marine Parkway Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge". MTA Bridges & Tunnels. Retrieved July 10, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Animations and Videos from Board Meeting". NTSB. Archived from the original on June 22, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Marine Parkway Bridge Stuck in 'Up' Position". 2014-11-24. 

External links[edit]