Port Morris, Bronx
|Neighborhood of The Bronx|
Walnut Avenue and 141st Street
|City||New York City|
|• Total||1.92 km2 (0.742 sq mi)|
|• Density||1,800/km2 (4,700/sq mi)|
|• Median income||$35,192|
|Area code||718, 347, 646|
Port Morris is a mixed use, primarily industrial neighborhood in the southwest Bronx, New York City. The neighborhood is part of Bronx Community Board 1. Its boundaries are the Major Deegan Expressway and Bruckner Expressway to the north, East 149th Street to the east, the East River to the southeast, the Bronx Kill south, and the Harlem River to the west. Oak Point, the southern tip of the South Bronx is in Port Morris. Bruckner Boulevard, which runs under the Expressway, is the primary thoroughfare through Port Morris. Most of the neighborhood is within walking distance from the Cypress Avenue station of the IRT Pelham Line (6 train). Zip codes include 10454. The neighborhood is served by the NYPD's 40th Precinct.
The neighborhood has been experiencing massive revitalization with many historic warehouses, factories and various manufacturing buildings being converted into lofts. The former Estey Piano Corp factory, now The Clock Tower, has the restaurant Charlies Bar & Kitchen operating on the ground level. Port Morris has become a burgeoning community of artists and other young professionals looking for more reasonable options outside of Manhattan. Efforts by the New York Restoration Project are underway to revive the waterfront in an area that historically suffers from high asthma rates. This will create much-needed green space for the community.
Port Morris has a population of around 3,523. The neighborhood predominately consists of Latin Americans and African Americans as well as a small white population concentrated mainly in the western portion of Bruckner Boulevard. Almost half of the population lives below the federal poverty line and receives public assistance (TANF, Home Relief, Supplemental Security Income, and Medicaid). The median income is significantly higher than that of other South Bronx neighborhoods. This is likely due to recent rezoning to increase commercial and residential activity in the area.
The name comes from a deep water port established along the neighborhood's East River (Long Island Sound) waterfront by Gouverneur Morris Jr., son of Gouverneur Morris, in 1842. He built a two mile (3 km) railroad from Melrose to his family's holdings on the waterfront, later called the Spuyten Duyvil and Port Morris Railroad, abandoned a hundred years later. The area is dominated by factory and warehouse buildings constructed in the mid-to-late 19th century, convenient to the railroad yards, of which the Oak Point Yard is the main survivor. Notable early businesses were the R. Hoe Co., as well as Cutler & Hammer Tool Works, and Mothers Friend Shirt Waist factory (1888) at Willow Ave. between E. 135th & E. 136th Sts.
The area was the site of the Hell Gate generating plant of Consolidated Edison, where George Metesky, the Mad Bomber who plagued NYC for decades was injured. While many of the early industrial buildings remain, much of the manufacturing has long since left the area. The most notable architectural/engineering feature of Port Morris is the northern approach to the Hell Gate Bridge supported by concrete arches (1917) northward from East 132nd Street, between Willow & Walnut Avenues. Plans are afoot to extend the South Bronx Greenway under Hell Gate Bridge to Randalls Island.
A wave of arson during the 1970s destroyed or damaged many residential, commercial, and industrial structures in the area. Late in the century industry began to return to Port Morris. Many abandoned residential buildings are also being rehabilitated and designated low income housing.
The history of Port Morris, as with other neighborhoods, is sometimes confused by the lack of fixed official boundaries. Late in the 20th century the name was sometimes applied to the area to the west, into Mott Haven. Mott Haven by older definition lies to the west rather than north of Port Morris.
- South Bronx Charter School for International Cultures and the Arts (East 133rd Street and Cypress Pl)
- Bx15: to Fordham Plaza or Manhattanville via Third Avenue
- Bx17: to Fordham Plaza via Crotona and Prospect Avenues
- Bx33: to 135th Street (served by the 2 3 trains) via 138th Street
- "Port Morris neighborhood in New York". Retrieved August 12, 2015.
- "Center for Urban Research". Retrieved 18 September 2015.
- "Port Morris Rezoning". Retrieved 12 August 2015.
- "Bronx Community District 1" (PDF). Retrieved 18 September 2015.
- 40th Precinct, NYPD.
- "Charlies Bar & Kitchen Is a Pioneering Dining Option in a Poor Bronx Neighborhood". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 September 2015.
- "The South Bronx Beckons". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 September 2015.
- "The Haven Project". Retrieved 18 September 2015.
- "Green Space and Health Linked in Vision for South Bronx". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
- "Mott Haven, the Bronx, in Transition". Retrieved 12 August 2015.
- Port Morris neighborhood in New York
- "Port Morris in Forgotten NY". Retrieved 8 September 2015.
- "Ship of Dreams". Retrieved 8 September 2015.
- Port Morris Branch, the so-called Bronx Swamp December 23rd, 2009, The LTV Squad
- South Bronx Greenway
- "Silvercup Studios Is Turning a Bronx Warehouse Into Its 3rd Production Complex". Retrieved 12 August 2015.