Friday, December 27, 2013

Proposal to light up the Hell Gate Bridge

From DNA Info:

The New York Anti-Crime Agency, a nonprofit that runs safety seminars and neighborhood graffiti cleanups, is pushing to get lights added to the Hell Gate Bridge, saying the unlit structure has gone for years without the recognition it deserves.

The bridge, operated by Amtrak, connects Queens to the Bronx by way of Randall's Island and is a looming sight along the Astoria waterfront, hulking over Astoria Park.

Designed by noted civil engineer Gustav Lindenthal, the Hell Gate opened in 1916 and was reportedly the inspiration behind the similarly-designed Sydney Harbour Bridge in Australia.

[Civic leader Tony] Meloni is hoping his appeal will interest current federal representatives who can take on the project, and suggests opening it up to the community to see what kind of lights people think would look best along the Hell Gate.


Anonymous said...

Put the lights in Forest Park instead.

Anonymous said...

Gee - increase energy usage, therefor CO2 emissions. If anyone who is pro lighting the bridge says ANYTHING about Global Warming/Climate change, ask them how this fits...

Jerry Rotondi said...

Let the light shine--not a bad idea!

Now, how about shining a light on some of Queens' notoriously crooked politicians--who have been hiding out like cockroaches--in some dark corner somewhere.

Which ones am I referring to?

You pick 'em!
There's a veritable apple orchard full of them out there.

georgetheatheist said...

It'll never happen. Just ask the opining seagulls.

Anonymous said...

But if we WANT to attract 30,000 to the 14 40-story Hallets Cove development towers NOW is the time to put in a big Christmas Tree in the park and add all kinds of bells a whistles to the area.

Bridge lights would be DELITEFUL and divert the attention of hipster dups from Davenport away from the projects and the sewage plant on Randells Island.

Go nicely with the $8,000,000 Peter Vallone 'Theater' in the former diving pool.

(of course, on the other side of the coin, we still have not figured out on how to put in all the infrastructure but that is another issue for AFTER the buildings go up and their tenant base heads south.)

Anonymous said...

Tell me again why vanity lighting for a railroad bridge is a concern of the New York Anti-Crime Agency, a non-profit I have never heard of before reading this article.

Location, location said...

Because Meloni lives nearby and this, he thinks, beautifies his neighborhood and raises his property values.

Anonymous said...

How about painting the thing first?

Anonymous said...

Funny, all of a sudden we need lights on Hell's gate?

Each agency has an agenda and a budget in order to stay relevant. Let's cut off some of the fat, let's get rid of all the irrelevant agencies that produce nothing and get back to basics.

Anonymous said...

Great selling boost for the new buildings going up.
Lighting would be the first step.
The bridge span has 2 very wide outer boardwalks and massive arched balcony's in the towers that could be re-opened for people & bicycles.
The balcony's and walks are accessed via the base of each tower (long sealed off).

Photo looking down

Anonymous said...

They'll never reopen the bridge for pedestrians and cyclists because it was never open to them at all, ever. Inside each tower is a very, very long set of stairs going up to track level - cyclists would have to carry the bikes all the way up. You could maybe install an elevator that goes one level above the street and one level below the track, but beyond that would require serious modification. The last set of steps up to track level is via a spiral stairs that probably wouldn't even fit a bike.

Anyway - I agree with the commentor above - most of this bridge needs a paint job since the contractor in the mid 90s watered down the paint halfway through the job, so half of it is still solidly red (on the viaduct approaches), while the rest is a rusty pink that looks awful. Paint the damned thing first - then maybe put some lights on it. It would certainly look nicer - which is something everyone here complains about, no?

As for 'the ny anti crime agency' - they do have a website, though they HAVE CLEARLY MISSED THE MEMO THAT ALL CAPS = SHOUTING on the internet.

I wonder who this group is a front for?

Anonymous said...

"Task forces", "agencies", "working in tandem with", "crime-fighting", et cet. just WHO is this guy Meloni? Where did he come from? A former cop? (a wannabee cop?) What's the C.V. on this guy?

Anonymous said...

I been up inside back in the 70s. Aside all the graffiti the structure is AMAZING with caverns and arched hallways, individually cut blocks like a medieval castle you see in movies.
Even back in the 70's the outer walkway of the roadbed was just horrifying. All rotten and missing wooden boards, any step would send you to the river below. If repaired it would be far to horrifying to walk on. This wooden plank outer walkway reminded me of the original falling apart end of million dollar pier in Atlantic City in the late 1960s only 10x higher and in worse shape

The small narrow spiral staircases lead above the arches to the tower roofs (not needed to access the roadway).
That bridges towers should be museums !!

Anonymous said...

Poor tony. A genuine nice guy who was running for peters seat. The vallones were thinking they could control and manipulate him. He saw the writing on the wall and didn't like playing politics. So, he pulled out of the race. The vallones were livid with him. He was supposed to keep the seat warm and do their bidding. Now they keep trying to punish him. Tony Meloni has a true opportunity to be a true civic leader in astoria now. Something desperately needed. Let's hope he steps up.

Gary the Agnostic said...

Anon No. 10 and 11:

It's not just stairways. Under ADA regulations, you would have to install elevators.

Lighting the bridge (why?) is pure fantasy. As Anon No. 1 notes, there are greater needs elsewhere. Stairways and walkways are beyond fantasy.

Anonymous said...

that community anti-crime immigrant services unit was little more than a Vallone tweeding program sucking up public moneys that could have gone to other groups.

not nearly as bad as CHOKE, the Vallone thing-a-ma-jig that got $100,000 for lightbulb recycling or what ever, was headed by a janitor from some apartment building, and in the minds of the moronic local press made Vallone an 'envirnmentalist.' Mystery Mike Gianaris, who seems to get interested in the queerest things in the community while generally ignoring it while he builds his resume in Albany, gave it money. Plenty of money.

Vallonia is such an odd place....

Anonymous said...

Tony Meloni has a true opportunity to be a true civic leader in astoria now. Something desperately needed. Let's hope he steps up.

Depends. If Costa is a puppet for party boss Crowley Meloni has a future. If not, he is finished.

Erik Baard said...

I'd like to see the bridge repainted, which adds to its longevity, but see no urgency in lighting it. It's a gorgeous bridge, and part of that is its understatedness. Of course there are also arguments against the energy waste, resulting pollution, and direct light pollution.