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This post courtesy of Explore Brooklyn, an all-inclusive guide to the businesses, neighborhoods, and attractions that make Brooklyn great.

Blame it on the Dutch. Brooklyn is awash in place names that are hard to wrap your tongue around. Read on for the origins and most common pronunciation of each. How do you pronounce these Brooklyn place names?

NEW UTRECHT AVE
Origin: New Utrecht, named for the Dutch city of Utrecht, was one of six towns that was incorporated into Kings County
Pronounced: YOO-trek

Sunset Park photo by The AllNite Images via Flickr.

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After the long cold winter so recently ended, there’s been a number of things which I’ve been making it a point to check up on, one of these is the focus of today’s post – the Kosciuszko Bridge project. The Kosciuszko Bridge spans my beloved Newtown Creek, carrying the Brooklyn Queens Expressway.

With its approach ramps, the 1939 era bridge is 2.1 miles long and considered one of the most dangerous structures in NYS. Governor Cuomo added the truss bridge to the “Fast Track” program and ordered the NYS DOT to replace it. Construction is well underway at this point, not that you’d really notice it from the roadway.

You need to visit DUKBO, Down Under the Kosciuszko Bridge Onramp, to see what’s going on.

More after the jump.

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A century ago, Queens was growing by leaps and bounds and exploding with brand new infrastructure, a spate of investment and building which was spurred on and started by the immense success of the 1909 Queensboro Bridge. The subways began to snake out from the great bridge in the 1920s, and expansions of the system continued right through the Depression era of the 1930s.

The IND Crosstown Line, which they called the GG back then (its was renamed the “G” in 1985), came to LIC’s 21st street/Van Alst, Court Square, and Queens Plaza stations on the 19th of August in 1933. Unfortunately, due to damage inflicted upon the tracks by Hurricane Sandy related flooding, there is no opportunity to visit these stations and tip a glass on their 81st birthday – currently – as MTA employees are working on repairing and upgrading the tracks, switches, signals and God knows what else there is down there. The Shuttle Bus just ain’t the same, I’m afraid, but it is appreciated.

Check out this Wikipedia page on the IND Crosstown, or the truly excellent nycsubway.org for more.

This is the Kosciuszko Bridge, which carries the Brooklyn Queens Expressway over my beloved Newtown Creek, and on Saturday she’ll be 75.

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Kosciuszko Bridge rendering courtesy NYS DOT

Last night, over on 39th Street in Sunnyside, the NYS DOT held a meeting to discuss the forthcoming Kosciuszko Bridge project. This is a BIG deal for anybody who lives in North Brooklyn, Western Queens, or who drives on the Brooklyn Queens Expressway. It’s also a HUGE deal for us as taxpayers. The first phase of this project, which will build half of the replacement span and demolish the existing bridge is $555 million – the largest contract in NYS DOT history. The contractors as chosen and announced by Governor Cuomo are Skanska, a construction firm based in NYC, which will be managing partner; Ecco III of Yonkers; Kiewit of Nebraska; and HNTB of Kansas.

The “New Meeker Avenue Bridge” opened back on August 23rd of 1939, and was a pet project of Robert Moses. It was the first link in the chain which would eventually become the BQE. This post at my Newtown Pentacle blog displays a series of historic shots from that long ago time, and this one here at Q’stoner discusses what’s found in DUKBO – Down Under the Kosciuszko Bridge Onramp.

Read more after the jump…

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The rickety Kosciuszko Bridge between Greenpoint and Queens could be replaced by this elegant-looking suspension bridge, a $770 million project that the DOT presented at a community meeting on Wednesday. DNAinfo reported that community members were concerned about how five years of bridge construction would affect their day-to-day lives. They’re worried about noise, transporting construction dirt, and whether construction could shake or damage their homes.

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A confession first: I’m likely the only person on earth who calls this spot DUKBO — short for “down under the Kosciuszko Bridge onramp.”

Laurel Hill Boulevard slouches roughly as it descends toward Review Avenue, where the Penny Bridge once stood and the Long Island Railroad once maintained a station and the Roman Catholic funeral ferries docked. The Kosciuszko Bridge occupies the shallow valley between two land forms which the colonial settlers of Newtown called “Laurel Hill” to the west and an easterly elevation once known as “Berlin Hill.” Berlin was a village which was absorbed into Maspeth during the First World War when living or doing business in a place called Berlin was a sticky situation.

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On Thursday, January 31, New York State DOT is holding a Public Information Meeting regarding phase 1 of the Kosciuszko Bridge reconstruction. More specifically, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) has applied for a permit a for temporary dewatering during construction of the Kosciuszko Bridge in Queens.