5. The Kosciuszko Bridge Originally Had Pedestrian Walkways
The Kosciuszko begins its slow rise out of Queens near Calvary Cemetery, as Laurel Hill Boulevard runs downhill directly alongside it. This is a surprisingly deserted stretch of road, where the long Queens approach is bounded on the right by the pastoral grounds of the cemetery, and in the distance you can see the BQE’s roadway gently bend as it rises to the through-truss section of the bridge as it crests over the water.
It’s a striking view, and one that few people ever get to see, as the area is cut off from the rest of the city to a remarkable degree. This is largely because the Kosciuszko traverses, almost exclusively, industrial areas on both banks of Newtown Creek. There is really no pedestrian connection to the bridge at all, either by walking nearby it, or crossing over it. The Kosciuszko originally featured two pedestrian walkways on its opening, but they were closed in 1966 in order to allow more width for traffic lanes, a move that did little to ease the bottleneck anyway.