New York

Admiring the Brooklyn Bridge

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Brooklyn Bridge is a major icon of New York that I had to see. In addition to its majestic aesthetics, the bridge is an architectural wonder of its time.

“Babe, you kena faham eh the significance of the design and structure.”

That was Reza’s pesanan to me when I told him I was going to see the Brooklyn Bridge.

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Brief history

So I read about it. Here’s what I understood from the sources, in lay man terms:

Brooklyn Bridge is a neo-Gothic suspension bridge located in downtown New York, built in the 1860s and completed in the 1880s , meant to connect the boroughs Manhattan and Brooklyn. It was designed and built by Roebling, a German civil engineer known for building suspension bridges (bridge that is supported by cables between its towers, nothing supporting it underneath, kot).

When the bridge opened, it was the longest steel suspension bridge at the time and the tallest structure in the Western Hemisphere. Seeing this gigantic structure at the time brought concerns to a lot of people and there were rumors that the bridge was going to collapse. Back then, engineers had yet to understand the technology behind building a suspension bridge that could withstand pressure and withstand time, so a lot of the suspension bridges during the time collapsed. Brooklyn Bridge was different, though. Roebling successfully designed the bridge with a truss system that was 6x as strong as he thought it actually needed, which means (I think) it’s very structurally sound. To respond to the rumors that the bridge was going to collapse, they had 21 elephants cross the bridge. That shut them up.

Now we see, that the Brooklyn Bridge is still standing, 100+ years later.

TLDR; Brooklyn Bridge is not your average bridge — it was a technologically advanced structure of its time that have proven itself against the test of time.

Read more of its history here.

From Manhattan

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From the Upper East Side, I got on the subway and headed to downtown Manhattan, to the Brooklyn Bridge station, to see and walk on the bridge. The walking and cycling passage toward the bridge was not hard to miss because everybody seemed to be heading that way. The walk was good, we got the chance to be up close to the bridge and inspect its details. To add to that, the weather was gorgeous, allowing us to get a great view of the New York skyscrapers from the bridge.

If you want to see or walk on the bridge, get on Line 4, 5 or 6 and get off at the City Hall-Brooklyn Bridge:

From Brooklyn

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Couple of days later, I took a train to Brooklyn because I wanted to see the bridge from the other side, with Manhattan as the backdrop. Took some walking to reach the Brooklyn Bridge Park, but it was all worth it the harbor view of Manhattan greeted me. Walked up to get a better view of the bridge and damn, the view of the bridge from this side was even better — just like how I imagined it to be. I spent more than 1 hour just walking around the area.

The Brooklyn Bridge Park is a big park that has several decks, for people to chill by the river and observe the view. There were info boards explaining the historic significance of the area i.e. where the US army, as directed by George Washington, landed to reclaim New York in the 1770s.

The Brooklyn Bridge Pier was close by, where people could get on a boat to the other side or dine at its restaurants and cafes. One with the longest queue was Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, alang-alang I went there and got myself decent double scoop ice-cream for $5 and ate it while admiring the view at the pier.

… and I thought, one day, I’m going to dine with Reza there.

To get to the park, get on line A or C and get off at the High St or line 2 or 3 and get off at Clark St:

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