Back on June 7, 2019, some friends and I, including the staff of The New Leaf Journal, embarked on a journey that was slated to begin with the Triborough Bridge, now officially called the RFK Bridge, and end in south Brooklyn. Due to a Roosevelt Island tram-induced bout of vertigo, my journey ended in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, short of our intended destination and two final bridge crossings. But it was still quite a long adventure prior to my final demise – we walked through Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn, and crossed seven bridges on the walk: Brooklyn (before a train ride), Third Avenue, Willis Avenue, Triborough (all sections), Randall’s Island Connector, Roosevelt Island, Queensboro, and finally Pulaski.
The Triborough Bridge has three sections, connecting Manhattan, the Bronx, and Queens, with exits on Randall’s Island. Although it is not a popular walking bridge like some of its neighbors, all sections of the Triborough Bridge have walking paths. One of the sections has no barrier separating pedestrians from the edge overlooking the East River, which seems to be flirting with catastrophe, but no one pays me to be an urban planner. Although much of the bridge is not particularly aesthetic – especially when compared to the stunning Randall’s Island Connector which connects Randall’s Island to the Bronx – it is a generally pleasant walk.
Besides the section with no barrier, I distinctly remember being surprised when I came across a set of steps in the middle of one of the pedestrian paths, not at the beginning or end where one might normally expect to find steps. My memories of the day may be clouded by my becoming violently sick not too long after a good start to the adventure, but I want to say that these steps are on the last section of the bridge we did – from Ward’s Island to Queens.
While I may not remember precisely where the steps were, I do have pictures. Below, I present two versions of the same picture that I took on the Triborough Bridge that morning. First, the color version, edited for publication by Victor.
Second, a black and white version of that same picture, also edited by Victor.
If things ever return to normal in New York City, perhaps I will return to the Triborough Bridge for another shot at the adventure – with no aerial trams for the second attempt. If any readers live in the area, I recommend walking all three sections of the Bridge and also seeing the Randall’s Island Connector, which I will surely cover in a later post. You will find a picture that I took right before hitting the walkway, after crossing the second of three sections of the RFK Bridge from Randall’s Island to the Bronx, in a separate article.
(Additional note: Although Victor did join us for the journey, he joined us later right before we crossed the Roosevelt Island Bridge. For that reason, he may be learning about the steps just like most of the rest of you.)