Watch—City Island Bridge: End of an Era

Last month we bid farewell to the iconic City Island Bridge, the only way on and off the island as the city begins the process of replacing the 114 year old structure (with an ugly causeway-like bridge.

Brothers Tommy and James Breen have been documenting the project since it began and have put together a rather heartwarming and touching video.

It’s not just the clam diggers and mussel suckers who live on the island (clam diggers are residents born on City Island and mussel suckers are born off-island) that are connected to this inanimate structure but perhaps the millions of Bronxites who have gone over to visit City Island and spend time with family and friends at one of the many restaurants and establishments on this idyllic and unique community in New York City.

Check out this beautiful video by the Breen Brothers who put in much heart and soul into documenting this process and how yet another bit of Bronx history has been taken away from us. (Follow their work at their Facebook Page: The New City Island Bridge)

City Island Bridge: End of an Era from James Breen on Vimeo.

The bridge was also memorialized by a poem written by Wilfredo Benitez:

Image ©Wilfredo Benitez

Requiem for a Bridge

Night descends upon the bridge,
A final sunset for a loyal friend of steel and asphalt.
For generations she stood proud,
A loyal mother over water,
Crossing her children safely, to and fro.

A stout and valiant little bridge,
Lost to a city of bridges and tunnels,
For whom this little icon is of no consequence,
She stands as firm as ever,
As the executioners prepare for her dismembering.

One final sunset,
Darkness tiptoeing in
And around the steel frame;
A ghostly roadway remains,
Clouds intermingling with the fading light.

It is the last light over a bridge,
Forced to give up her spirit.
It is the last light over a bridge,
No longer the way home.
It is the last light over a bridge,
As she valiantly awaits her death.

Rest in Peace,
Dear little robust bridge,
Rest in peace,
As you fade into the sunset,
Into the realms of everlasting dreams,
Where you will remain standing firm in our hearts,
Bringing your children to and fro…

©Wilfredo Benitez
December 21st, 2015

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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.