by Kevin Walsh

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!

As always, “comment…as you see fit.” I earn a small payment when you click on any ad on the site.



RaChaCha April 19, 2022 - 10:31 pm

Wrong! You sir, could never be replaced. I love little bridges and infrastructure odds & ends like this, so it’s sad that it’s getting replaced. Very odd indeed that the LIRR is going to all the trouble to build a new bridge but not widen it.

Sergey Kadinsky April 19, 2022 - 11:11 pm

On this old bridge, the concrete deck dates to 1944.
The stone walls date to 1888.
The NIMBY neighbors here nearly killed the third track project.

Bill April 26, 2022 - 8:35 am

So? Some people care about their neighborhoods. Is that a bad thing?

Tal Barzilai April 20, 2022 - 1:13 am

You can also find an underpass like this in Pleasntville, but it’s a Metro North train that usually goes on the top, though I wish they didn’t remove the stop signs on either side for motorists to know when the other was coming not that long ago.

John McKeown April 20, 2022 - 6:16 am

I always enjoy these articles.

Bob M April 20, 2022 - 6:34 am

A couple of similar bridges still exist in Garden City: one is down the street from the one above (on Edgemere Road, south of Stewart Ave. and near a nice, old fire station). Another is on Cherry Valley Ave. below Stewart.

Sunnysider April 20, 2022 - 8:41 am

The new underpass looks like the Clockwork Orange guys are going to come sauntering through it any moment and start kicking an old man.

Alan April 20, 2022 - 9:43 am

There are two ancient railroad overpasses in Laurel, MD, that look just like the one pictured. It’s on the Camden line (originally the B&O railroad eons ago), which today carries freight and MARC passenger service. They are both controlled by traffic lights, green in one direction at a time.

Do you know if auto traffic will be traffic-light controlled in the rebuilt underpass?

redstaterefugee April 20, 2022 - 11:38 am

A similar situation existed on the approach road to Theodore Roosevelt Lake in Arizona. However, ADOT, recognizing that the population & tourism were increasing, built a modern twp lane span:

Peter April 20, 2022 - 1:04 pm

River Road in Yaphank has a single lane underpass below the LIRR tracks, though the road is lightly travelled.

Warren April 20, 2022 - 3:29 pm

One of those ancient B&O overpasses on the Camden line (at Laurel/Bowie Road) has cross traffic on the east side of it, requiring a traffic light. I know of a single-vehicle overpass in Harpers Ferry WV on Bakerton Road that does not have a traffic light and one has blow their horn so the opposing traffic can tell you are beyond the bridge abutments; I do not like using that road! Again, another B&O overpass in action!

Liman April 20, 2022 - 5:38 pm

As does the aptly named Narrow Lane underpass in Bridgehampton. On an S curve, no less.

Joe+Brennan April 21, 2022 - 2:38 pm

I was surprised at a generous 12’9″ clearance, and then I noticed the concrete layer above the stone. The bridge was raised at what seems to be a recent date.

m Keit April 25, 2022 - 1:54 pm

Garden City did not want the second lane-they want to keep outsiders out.They fought very hard to prevent the reconstruction.

Bill April 26, 2022 - 8:36 am

Do you blame them? Geez…all in the name of sacred “diversity”

redstaterefugee April 27, 2022 - 12:12 pm

“E Pluribus Unum”: from many one


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.