Monday, March 05, 2007

Preserving the Pulaski Skyway Bridges as a Pathway

WalkBike Jersey made it into the Sunday NY Times

To the Editor:

Your report on the bridge that connects Newark with Jersey City {Pulaski Skyway...;Feb.18} overlooks the possibility of preserving the 75 year-old span for non-motorized use if and when a new bridge is built. The recycling of this 3.5 mile bridge for bicyclists, skaters, joggers, commuters & tourists ought to at least be studied before millions of state & federal dollars are committed for demolition.

NPS public domain photo of the Pulaski Skyway

The Pulaski Skyway is just one of more than 50,000 bridges throughout the nation considered to be structurally deficient — for motor vehicles — which could be preserved and restored as valuable landmarks for just a fraction of the demolition costs. Exemplary is the preserved, 2.6 mile Friendship Bridge in Tampa. Scheduled for demolition in 1997, Tampa Bay's communities & planners rallied to save it, and did. Today the Friendship Bridge accommodates annually more than 6 million thankful users.

Friendship TrailBridge Opening Day on Tampa Bay FL
From the Friendship TrailBridge website

Like the landmark "Trenton Makes" Bridge, the Skyway could be a vital segment of the Maine to Florida East Coast Greenway, and deserves a thorough review and estimate for potential reuse. Currently, there isn't a safe, convenient option to cross the Hackensack River without an automobile. The Pulaski Skyway could be a gateway to connect some of New Jersey's most densely populated urban areas.

WalkbikeJersey, a non-profit organization committed to reuse, recycling, and promoting alternative transportation options in our state, is ready to assist in every way.

Kerri Martin

WalkBike Jersey