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Under The Kosciuszko Bridge

As much as I loved the old Kosciuszko Bridge, I’ve grown to love he new one more. At night, driving south southwest on Review Avenue, a factory and cemetery-lined thoroughfare, the view of the glowing bridge, the completed first span and the still-under-construction second span (planned opening: September) is spectacular.

Alas, I returned by day, biking past the entrance to Calvary Cemetery on my left—a reminder of the many souls who’ve passed on (Forgotton New York has posted a thorough introduction to the cemetery)

And the wonderfully weed-wrung wall to my right. From Wikipedia:

A weed is a plant considered undesirable in a particular situation, "a plant in the wrong place".

Sums up how lots of us feel most of the time, n’est pas?

Further up is one of Maspeth’s deadly railroad crossings—21 collisions from 2004 – 2011--a hub of the New York & Atlantic short-haul freight line, carrying building materials, paper, recyclables, beer and flour through Brooklyn and Queens and Nassau and Suffolk Counties. Because of the recently-legislated congestion pricing—bad for trucks—the line will be increasing its share of transport in the coming years. If you want a real thrill, wait here to watch the trains pass here.

Further on, I came to the 40,000 square foot York Studios—which, according to its website, is one of the country’s premier film and television production studios (The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Elementary, John Wick), though you wouldn’t know it from the outside. The studio will soon be moving to a new 350,000 square foot facility in the Soundview section of the Bronx.

And then our destination, the Kosciuszko Bridge, though, sadly, during the day. Read this sweet Times elegy to the old bridge, printed a few months before it was destroyed, in which Governor Andrew Cuomo, speaking of his dad—the late Governor Mario Cuomo—says, “The first time I heard my father use expletives was on this bridge.”

Driving often over the finished part of the new Kosciuszko Bridge, I’ve watched with interest the second roadway construction, the after-midnight hardhats, the lighting that glows and fades…but the city below is in some ways more interesting.

The view under the Queens side is surprisingly spare—as if cleanup crews have been working harder than construction crews. Is this New York’s Potemkin Village? Brooklyn side will be a multi-use park called “Under the K.”

I biked on.

Who knew that actual companies buy and sell pallets. Dig the sign.

Last stop in Queens, at the corner of the perfectly-named Rust Street, the now-shuttered Good Fellas Diner, where, in the 1990 Scorsese flick, Henry Hill figured out he was going to get wacked and where Jimmy Conway destroyed a phone booth.

I turned down Maspeth Avenue, crossing back into Brooklyn over the Grand Street Bridge (where Grand Avenue, for some reason becomes Grand Street), the third bridge on this site (the first two were made of wood), a bearer of traffic from the past,

crossing the ever-fetid Newtown Creek, which still stinks and boils.

Final point of interest is 346 Lorimer Street, site of the former offices of the long-defunct Joseph Fallert Brewing History:

Company. Read all about it here.

Not sure which I like more: the building or the website.

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