Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Bridge of the Week #81: Meadow Lake Bridge #2

This week's bridge is the second near Meadow Lake in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, that spans the mighty Flushing River. This one is at the southern end of the lake, near Jewel Ave. It's a basic steel and concrete bridge like the other. It does have a sidewalk, but the roadway is so seldom used by motor vehicles (to which access may be restricted I think) that there's usually no problem just running in the roadway.

This bridge you would run across if running a loop around the lake, roughly 2 miles, or could be used if running into Flushing Meadows from the Kew Gardens area to the south and west. Many ultras have been staged near and around Meadow Lake, including the Sri Chinmoy 6- and 10-day races every April.

Meadow Lake, and Willow Lake across Jewel Ave. to the south, are both man-made lakes created for parkland in accordance with the 1939 World's Fair. Meadow Lake is actually the largest lake in New York City, at 93 acres. There are drainage issues, however, and the surrounding land does frequently flood, especially on the western edge.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Bridge of the Week #80: Meadow Lake Bridge #1

This week's bridge is one of two in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens that cross the Flushing River in the area of Meadow Lake. This one is on the north side of the lake, where the water flows out towards Flushing Bay. I was originally not planning to include these bridges, as I generally am not interested in footbridges over park ponds, but decided to include these because they are accessible to motor vehicles (although I believe somewhat restricted), and the Flushing River is a genuine natural waterway, although it is routed underground through much of the park.

This bridge itself is a simple concrete and steel bridge. It's not very long, as you can see from the picture above. It has a wide sidewalk that is separated from the vehicular traffic by a concrete barrier. There are picnic areas and nice park facilities in the area, the Amphitheater, built for the 1964 World's Fair, is just to the west. It's a nice place to run, and can be included in a loop around Meadow Lake.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Bridge of the Week #79: Rockaway Blvd. Bridge #2

I may have gotten behind, but I haven't forgotten about the bridges. This week's bridge is the second bridge on Rockaway Blvd. in the Rosedale-Brookville area of eastern Queens, east of JFK Airport (the first being the last reviewed bridge).

This really isn't much of a bridge at all, something between a culver and a bridge, but I decided to put it one here anyway. The water that flows below is an offshoot of Thurston Basin, part of the network of tiny waterways at the eastern end of Jamaica Bay.

This section of Rockaway Blvd. between Springfield Gardens and Meadowmere Park looks like it's little-traveled by anyone on foot, but it is a couple miles of straight, flat sidewalk uninterrupted by intersections, so for runners who live in the area it could have some training benefits.