WHEN I moved to fabulous Flushing in 1993, I was still bicycling far distances in roadways, ranging as far west as Ridgewood and as far east as Garden City; these days, I mainly stick to the Joe Michaels bike path at the Cross Island Parkway and Fort Totten, as I feel my reflexes have deteriorated over the years and I no longer want to dodge cars, pedestrians and dogs.
One spot I always remembered was the Long Island Rail Road underpass in Garden City Park, where a busy two-lane road is narrowed to just one. The road is Denton Avenue to the north, Tanners Pond road south of the bridge. Cars going either direction have to stop and let a car going in the opposite direction get through.
Frankly when I saw this bridge in the 1990s I was flabbergasted such a thing had survived that long. Likely, it goes back to the times when there was not nearly as much traffic. At some point the LIRR ran at grade here and was later electrified and bridged, but I’d say this bridge goes back at least to the 1920s.
Alas, everything is replaced given enough time (even I will be) and this month, the old Denton Avenue Bridge is being replaced by a much more functional and bland item as a third track is added to the railroad. Bizarrely, traffic engineers did not take the opportunity to add a second lane to the roadway, so the old bottleneck will persist.
Sick transit, Gloria!
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