The Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge, which connects Queens to Manhattan, rarely gets the attention that it merits. Many New Yorkers drive or bike across the bridge on a daily basis and it is also a popular running spot because it provides magnificent views of the East River, Roosevelt Island and Manhattan from high above.
Designed by engineer Gustav Lindenthal and architect Henry Hornbostel, it is the “longest of the East River Bridges, with an overall length of 7,449 feet,” according to the New York City Department of Transportation. The construction of the Queensboro Bridge began in 1901, and the bridge officially opened on June 18, 1909. To better appreciate its history and significance, here are our top ten secrets of New York City’s Queensboro Bridge.
10. There Used to be A Trolley on the Queensboro Bridge
Photo from Wikimedia Commons
The Queensboro Bridge originally had a trolley line from 1909 to 1957. This trolley had an underground station at 2nd Avenue and went to Astoria, Flushing, College Point, Corona, Steinway and Queens Boulevard, according to Joseph Brennan of Abandoned Stations.
Most importantly, the trolleys lasted until 1957 – even though the mode of transportation was being phased out. This was because of the stop at the middle of the bridge that allowed people to go to Welfare Island (now Roosevelt Island). Until 1954, this stop was the only way to get there.