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Thread: Wards Island Bridge

  1. #1

    Default Wards Island Bridge

    Wards Island Bridge

    The Wards Island Bridge is a pedestrian bridge connecting the East River Housing Project at East 103rd Street in Manhattan to Wards Island. Along the river, the bridge is located between exits 14 and 15 of the FDR Drive. This vertical-lift bridge has a total of twelve spans. Spans one through four are located on the Manhattan side of the bridge and are oriented from south to north. At span five the bridge turns from west to east. The curb-to-curb width of the lift span is 3.66m. The clear width of the Manhattan approach ramp is 3.66m and the clear width of the Wards Island approach ramp measures about 3.76m.

    The first known bridge to Wards Island (formerly Great Barn Island) was built in 1807 with the money of two private citizens, Philip Milledolar and Bartholomew Ward, to aid their cotton business on the small island. This wooden drawbridge, connecting East 114th Street in Manhattan to the northwest corner of the island, lasted until 1821, when a storm destroyed all but the stone piers. The current pedestrian bridge was built in 1951. It was designed to accommodate visitors to Wards Island's park, stadium, psychiatric hospitals, and athletic facilities.

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  3. #3
    Moderator NYatKNIGHT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Manhattan - South Village


    It's been that gaudy aqua color for as long as I can remember.

  4. #4
    Forum Veteran
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    New York City


    I like the color, actually. I've been meaning to walk along that bridge for some time.

  5. #5


    The Wards Island Bridge is a pedestrian bridge over the Harlem River connecting the East River Housing Project at East 103rd Street in Manhattan to Wards Island. The view from Wards Island. Notice that the lift span is raised - the bridge is closed until spring.

  6. #6


    Nice composition. It's an intriguing bridge.

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  8. #8
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002


    Footbridge linking East Harlem to Randalls Island to re-open after 2-year, $16.8M makeover

    Will afford 24/7 pedestrian access to island for first time in 30 years

    By Douglas Feiden

    The 103rd Street Footbridge — also known as the Wards Island Bridge — as it looked while under
    construction in 1950. It reopens Friday after a $16.8 million renovation.

    ridge spanning the East River reopens on Friday, linking East Harlem with Randalls Island after a two-year, $16.8 million, top-to-bottom renovation. For the first time in 30 years, the 103rd Street Footbridge will be open 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, providing access to an urban oasis that’s dotted with sports fields and a stadium, bucolic gardens and waterfront pathways.

    The Robert Moses-era crossing had been open to the public just seven months of the year, and only in daylight hours, since the early 1980s, a legacy of high crime rates and the city’s fiscal crisis in the 1970s.

    “There’s always been this perception that Randalls Island is far, far away from East Harlem,” said Thomas Lunke, the director of planning at the Harlem Community Development Corp.

    “That’s about to change because now there will be open, free, easy and welcoming access for walkers and bicyclists from El Barrio.”

    To celebrate the rebirth of the 103rd Street Footbridge, the Randall's Island Park Alliance on Saturday will stage “Go with the Flow,” a festival of art, live music, soccer and tennis lessons, snacks and environmental exploration along the park’s scenic walkways.

    Expect a surge of new visitors to the island with the restored access to the 12-foot-wide, 1,247-foot-long span, which opened in 1951 — at a cost of $2.1 million — and is also known as the Wards Island Bridge.

    Six decades later, the massive rehabilitation project cost taxpayers eight times as much.

    The city’s Dept. of Transportation on Thursday declined to discuss the scope and time frame of the work, and refused to provide answers to questions about when the bridge was closed and other specifics of the project.

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