The World's Longest Ped Bridge

It's 1.28 miles long, spans 212 ft. above the Hudson River only 80 miles north of Manhattan, and a state park, no less, officially titled "Walkway Over the Hudson". Initially a railroad bridge that opened in 1888, it closed after a fire in 1974.
May 11, 2010, 1pm PDT | Irvin Dawid
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NYT 'Our Towns' columnist Peter C. Applebome reports on the first anniversary of the historic Poughkeepsie bridge in its reborn form and function that connects Poughkeepsie, a once-bustling industrial city and county seat of Dutchess County, to Highland, NY on the west side of the Hudson River.

May 8 marked the 36th anniversary of "the fire that turned an old steel railroad bridge across the Hudson into an abandoned eyesore, and the first time that the anniversary could be pondered from a pedestrian walkway that evokes the feeling of floating on air."

"When it opened in October, after almost 20 years of quixotic reclamation efforts, it seemed a victory of inspiration and persistence over practicality. But six months later it has become something else: a marvel of adaptive-use architecture that has been embraced to a degree even its backers hadn't expected."

If you do go there, consider taking the train as it's just 4 blocks north of the Metro North and Amtrak station in Poughkeepsie. You can bike and rollerblade across the bridge, but leave your skateboard at home, as sell as any motorized vehicle.

Note: the "Our Towns" column appears twice weekly and "dispatches from almost anyplace in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut other than New York City."

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Published on Monday, May 10, 2010 in The New York Times - N.Y. / Region
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