Bridges and Tunnels in Manhattan NY

The East River Bridges

The four major bridges over the East River were constructed within four decades, from the start of construction on the Brooklyn Bridge in January 1870 to completion of the Manhattan Bridge in December 1909.

The Williamsburg Bridge (no toll)

Said to have been inspired by the works of the eminent French architect Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, the landmark Williamsburg Bridge is the largest of the three suspension bridges that span the heavily-navigated East River. A gargantuan structure noted for its 35-story steel towers and ponderous stiffening trusses, the Williamsburg Bridge boldly reaches from Delancey Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan to Marcy Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Designed by Leffert L. Buck and architecturally embellished by Henry Hornbostel, the bridge took seven years and $30 million to construct. Upon its completion in 1903, it became the longest suspension bridge in the world, supplanting a record held by the Brooklyn Bridge for the previous two decades. The first elevated train went into service on the bridge in 1905.

The Brooklyn Bridge (no toll)

Arguably the most influential bridge in American history, the Brooklyn Bridge remains one of New York City’s most celebrated architectural wonders. Designed by the brilliant engineer John Augustus Roebling (1806-1869) and completed by his equally ingenious son Washington Roebling (1837-1926), this elegant structure was, at the time of its completion in 1883, the longest suspension bridge in the world. Anchored across the lower East River by two neoGothic towers and a delicate lacework of steel-wire cables, the soaring lines of the Brooklyn Bridge have inspired countless architects, engineers, painters and poets to pursue their own expressions of creative excellence, among them Frank Lloyd Wright, Hart Crane, Walt Whitman, Georgia O'Keefe, Joseph Stella, John Marin and Lewis Mumford.
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1. Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority

TBTA operates seven bridges and two tunnels: The bridges include Triborough, Throgs Neck, Varrazano Narrows, Bronx-Whitestone, Henry Hudson, Marine Parkway Gill Hodges Memorial, and Cross Bay Veterans Memorial. The two tunnels are the Brooklyn Battery and Queens Midtown. www.mta.nyc.ny.us/bandt
 
New York, NY, 10017


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The Manhattan Bridge (no Toll)

The last of the three great suspension bridges constructed across the East River, the Manhattan Bridge today is one of the most heavily traveled East River crossings. During an average day, more than 78,000 vehicles and 350,000 people use the bridge’s six roadways and two subway tracks to pass between Canal Street in lower Manhattan and Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn. Engineered by Leon Moisseiff (1872-1943) and fitted with a splendid set of approaches designed by the renowned architectural team of Carrere and Hastings, the Manhattan Bridge is one of the most aesthetically pleasing of New York City’s transportation structures.

The Queensboro Bridge

Originally christened Blackwell’s Island Bridge, and intended to link Manhattan’s Harlem Line with the Long Island Railroad, the colossal, two-decked Queensboro Bridge is one of the greatest cantilever bridges in the history of American bridge design. A collaboration between the famed bridge engineer Gustav Lindenthal (1850-1935) and architect Henry Hornbostel, the Queensboro’s massive, silver-painted trusses span the East River between 59th Street in Manhattan and Long Island City in Queens and offer spectacular views of midtown Manhattan, highlighted by the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, and the United Nations. Often referred to as the 59th Street Bridge, the Queensboro’s completion preceded that of the Manhattan Bridge by nine months.