Hudson Valley Bridges: Crossings and Spans Over the Hudson River

Cross purposes: The Valley’s buzzing about the new TZB. But what about our other bridges?


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bear mountain bridge

Bear Mountain Bridge

The first span to cross the Hudson between New York City and Albany, Bear could also claim to be the longest suspension bridge in the world when its ribbon was cut in 1924, though that fame was short-lived. Philadelphia’s Benjamin Franklin Bridge — which was more than four times longer — opened in 1926.

Today, the bridge — which has one lane of traffic each way and does not allow trucks weighing more than 10 tons — is arguably the most picturesque of the lot, as the cliffs of the Hudson Highlands, draped in trees, form a striking backdrop for its towers at a narrow S-curve in the river. And backpack-clad hikers are a common sight: The Appalachian Trail crosses right over the bridge.

  • Type: suspension
  • Length: 2,255 feet
  • Year opened: 1924
  • Designer: Howard C. Baird
  • Main view: mountains
  • Tolls: $1.50 cash; $1.25 E-ZPass
  • Traffic: 6.7 million cars in 2011
  • Pedestrian-friendliness: excellent; walkway on north and south side
  • Suicide prevention system: phones

Read on for more fun facts about your local bridges:​


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