A section of
the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway as it ducks under the Manhattan Bridge in
DUMBO. Notice how close the BQE overpass is positioned to the Manhattan
Bridge's stone stanchion.
Why a Special Section Dedicated to the BQE in DUMBO and Brooklyn Heights?
The Brooklyn-Queens Expressway is one of the most fascinating expressways in the New York City area. The Brooklyn-Queens/Gowanus Expressway combination (I-278) winds through the western edge of Brooklyn as it passes through several diverse neighborhoods. Since the right-of-way of the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway (BQE) runs through densely populated areas, the expressway had to be squeezed through many locations in order to minimize displacement of existing infrastructure, businesses, and residences.
While taking pictures for the Jay Street Connecting Railroad Virtual Tour, your webmaster took the opportunity to capture some images of the BQE in the DUMBO area. This relatively short virtual tour of the BQE in DUMBO will examine some of the ways the expressway was integrated in to the neighborhood.
For historical information pertaining to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, I recommend a visit to Steve Andersen's nycroads.com site.
Let's continue with the tour...
The BQE right-of-way makes a gradual turn between the areas of the Manhattan Bridge and Brooklyn Bridge. Robert Moses was held the titles of being head of the Long Island Parks Commissioner and the New York City Parks Commissioner throughout the various stages of his career. Along the route of the BQE, Moses built parks where there was open space (space usually became "open" after buildings that once stood in the path of the expressway's right-of-way were demolished). This little park has a couple of benches, and some tables. Trees add to the park's appearance.
The eastbound (geographically north) wye of the BQE. Notice how close the expressway overpass is to the building that stands immediately to the right of the expressway's right-of-way.
The speed limit on the BQE in this area is a blazingly fast forty-five
miles per hour. Believe me, if you have ever driven on this section
of expressway, it appears as if you are going sixty miles an hour
when one is really driving forty-five miles an hour, due to the expressway's
tight turns and narrow carriageway.
Another park located below the eastbound wye. This park isn't as nice as the other park. Mostly consisting of asphalt and a couple of broken basketball hoops, the park isn't conducive for making people want to play in it.
A view of the BQE as seen from under the Brooklyn Bridge on Fulton Street.
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