Come see the Manhattan Bridge, with dazzling views

Eye on Real Estate: The views of DUMBO will amaze you

January 3, 2018 By Lore Croghan Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Here's why people walk across the Manhattan Bridge in cold weather — to see the Brooklyn Bridge Park shoreline, Empire Stores, Jane's Carousel, the Brooklyn Bridge and the World Trade Center. Eagle photos by Lore Croghan
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Know your bridges, Brooklynites. The tourists do.

Our iconic spans are excellent spots for scenic strolls in every season of the year.

Didn’t your New Year’s resolutions include a resolve to get more exercise? A brisk walk over the East River is far more entertaining than a long slog on a treadmill. Bundle up in a down coat and heavy gloves, and you won’t even notice it’s winter.


It can’t compete with the grandeur of the famous Brooklyn Bridge.

No other span can.

But the views are really something.

There’s a reason savvy sightseers venture out to the middle of the Manhattan Bridge when the temperature’s only 24 degrees.

Its pedestrian path offers a peerless perspective of the iconic Brooklyn Bridge as it swoops majestically over the East River.

From this vantage point on the Manhattan Bridge, Jane’s Carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park stands in front of one of the Brooklyn Bridge’s stone towers, and the World Trade Center and the Woolworth Building in Lower Manhattan stand behind the Brooklyn Bridge’s other stone tower.  

From this spot on the Manhattan Bridge’s walkway, the landmarked Empire Stores complex on the shoreline of Brooklyn Bridge Park and the nearby DUMBO Clock Tower can also be seen.


Latvian immigrant Leon Moisseiff designed the bridge

The Manhattan Bridge, which spans the East River between DUMBO and Lower Manhattan’s Chinatown, was designed by Leon Moisseiff.

The Latvian immigrant was the lead designer of San Francisco’s renowned Golden Gate Bridge. He also designed the infamous Tacoma Narrows Bridge, AKA “Galloping Gertie,” which collapsed four months after its opening in 1940.

The Manhattan Bridge opened on Dec. 31, 1909, before its construction was actually finished.

It was Mayor George B. McClellan Jr.’s last day in office. He wanted there to be a public ceremony to celebrate the bridge’s opening before his term ended.

The steel suspension bridge was built to alleviate overcrowding on the Brooklyn Bridge.

The DUMBO entrance to the Manhattan Bridge’s pedestrian path is on Jay Street near the corner of Sands Street.

Before climbing the stairs to the walkway, take a quick detour down to Anchorage Place to see the bridge’s vaulted granite archway. The popular public space is now the home of the DUMBO Reflector, artist David Crumley’s nine-foot-tall sign that spells out the neighborhood’s name in constantly-changing colored lights.

Once you’re up on the walkway, the first thing you’ll see is DUMBO Heights, the office complex that Kushner Cos. and its investor partners created from former Bible-printing plants they purchased from the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Some of the buildings are connected by skybridges.

Jared Kushner headed Kushner Cos. until he stepped aside to serve as senior adviser to President Donald Trump, his father-in-law.

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Carrere & Hasting designed its monumental Manhattan entrance

Some of Two Trees Management’s buildings are easy to identify from the walkway — for instance office building 55 Washington St., thanks to the signage in the windows of one of its retail tenants, gourmet grocer Foragers.

When you get to the middle of the Manhattan Bridge and see the staggering Brooklyn Bridge Park scenery we described at the outset of this story, you’ll want to stand there and take photos for a good long time.  

Once you tear yourself away, Lower Manhattan’s shoreline beckons.

Chinatown’s tenements look picturesque. There’s a stunning old church made of stone on the corner of Henry and Market streets.

We looked it up after we went walking on the bridge — and it turned out to be the combination Georgian-Gothic-style Sea and Land Church, which was built in 1817. This individual city landmark now belongs to the First Chinese Presbyterian Church of the City of New York.  

Your stroll ends at the intersection of Canal Street and the Bowery.

There, you find an eye-popping granite colonnade and arch at the bridge’s Manhattan entrance. This grand entrance was designed by the great masters of Beaux-Arts architectural style, Carrere & Hastings.

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