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Celebrating the Brooklyn Bridges 125th Birthday

bklyn bdg.jpgThousands of people are expected to gather at at the Brooklyn Bridge’s 125th birthday blowout Thursday night, with fireworks, a Navy flyover, a colorful new lighting scheme and a full weekend of events.

The planned kick-off will take place on Thursday at Empire-Fulton Ferry Park with a concert featuring the Brooklyn Philharmonic, followed by a Grucci Fireworks extravaganza. A festive lighting ceremony will illuminate the entire bridge, which will remain lit every evening from 9 to 11 p.m. through Memorial Day.

The bridge now carries about 126,000 cars per day, at the city’s last count in 2006, and is used by countless cyclists and pedestrians. It has been refurbished repeatedly, and some parts have been strengthened. But the towers, main cables and main beams are original.

The city plans to spend $250 million to $300 million fixing the ramps and painting the bridge, starting early next year, city Department of Transportation spokesman Ted Timbers said Wednesday.

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.

Brooklyn Bridge Bytes:
Construction Commenced – January 3, 1870
Opened to traffic – May 24, 1883
Total length – 6016 feet
Length of Main Span – 1595.5 feet
Length of each of the four cables – 3578.5 feet

14 Responses

  1. My wife and I got married the night of the bridges’ 100th anniversary. A friend wrote a bracha in the card and I would like to pass that bracha on to every chosson and kallah. “May your marriage be as beautiful and strong and last as long”. (besides for the standard bayis ne’eman beyisroel bracha).

  2. When there was a bridge collapse in the USA recenly- The Brooklyn Bridge was listed as the one in the worst state around! I hope they strengthen it soon!

  3. For all those wondering, it was my great-great Heshie AKA Hymie Himmelstein who was from the 1st to brave himself and walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. (At least according to Zaidy)

  4. ..”…black man was assulted by hassidic jews…” ..”jewish teenager robbed and beaten by black youths”..reminds us of the suadi controlled press regarding the mid-east “cycle of violence”… they beat their victims within inch of his life one died..the others beaten viciuosly.. and the other cycle (jewish) or 2 sprayed with totally safe spray in retaliaton for all the vicious violence the other “cycle did..and what does the anti-semite self hating new york times print..see 1st 3 lines..also poster “sinisent” is also of shitta “jews are just as capable” see article “crown heights man “april 25th…”have reason why we say “saudi controlled”

  5. The legend has it that Roebling put egg whites in the mortar used to assemble the stones in the bridge. There are no cracks in the stone towers of the bridge…after 125 years!

  6. You missed one very important tidbit in the Bytes:

    Having been sold billions of times (at least!), it is the most often sold bridge in the history of the world.

    I was on the Bklyn Promenade for the 100th birthday and the fireworks were the best I have ever seen. Can they change the date of the fireworks so that I could attend the hadluka and then also the fireworks?

  7. #12 I saw 1983 f/works from the BQE and it looked as if the fireworks were coming right at me…also they had fireworks coming out of the bridge from every conceivable place…

  8. to post #8,…oy belong at article “NYT heights..” may did you end up here? (excuse, me am used to talking to ourselves)

  9. Anyone interested in learning more about the building of the Brooklyn Bridge (which is a fascinating story) should read The Great Bridge, by one of the best writers of our time, David McCullough.

  10. They tested its streghnth during construction by using a line of elephants to cross it . Ehh? bet you didnt know that!

  11. 126,000 cars a day. I could put a toll booth on there! ( after I buy it for the 126,000 time)

    I remember learning Chezkas Habatim and my rebbe used to use it as an expression,”selling the brooklin bridge)

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