‘A danger for young children.’ Residents say this Gowanus Canal bridge isn’t safe.
With the waterway's long history of drownings, suicides and sinkings, the anxiety may be justified.
Exercise extreme caution when crossing the Union Street Bridge with children.
That’s what Gowanus residents and activists warned at a recent community meeting, arguing that the 115-year-old overpass spanning the Gowanus Canal poses a risk for small-bodied passersby who could fall into the fetid waters below.
“It’s a danger there for young children,” said Linda Mariano of the Gowanus Canal Community Advisory Group and Friends and Residents of Greater Gowanus. “There are gaps where the bridge opens and closes — large gaps at the edges. It’s dangerous.”
Joseph Alexiou, a journalist, historian and author of “Gowanus: Brooklyn’s Curious Canal,” agreed, saying people have been plunging into the waterway since it was first constructed and he doesn’t expect that to change.