This glorious old film surfaced on YouTube yesterday, showing the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge under construction.
Workers are seen dangling from the bridge’s towering pillars, and working – sans safety harnesses! – to complete what would become the longest suspension bridge in the world, completed in 1964.
The cameraman gets right up there with the workers, and shows some of the stellar views of Brooklyn and Staten Island, and even peers down on a then-20-year-old Belt Parkway – which, of course, had not yet had any of the ramps leading up to the span.
And, no, there’s no mention of the legendary story of the construction worker who fell into one of the cement stanchions and remains buried inside the steel-and-concrete landmark. That’s probably because it’s not true.
But it’s still a nifty little video of one of most famous elements of the Brooklyn skyline.
The body surfaced Tuesday morning in the water off Midland Avenue and Father Capadano Boulevard in Midland Beach, and is believed to be in her 50s, the same age as the woman believed to have taken a fatal plunge from the bridge on Sunday. She has not been officially identified.
We know you rarely agree with anything anyone from the other side of the pond has to say, however, in this case, they might be on to something.
The protest takes place at Lily Pond Avenue and Major Avenue, near the entrance to the bridge. Yes, that is the Staten Island side. This means that you would have had to pay the currently exorbitant toll amount in order to cross the bridge so that you may protest against an even higher toll amount. Silly, I know.
However, a Brooklyn-side protest to show our solidarity could work. Hey pols, who’s in?
If you happen to be in Staten Island, or wish to travel there to make your voice heard, the protest starts at 12 p.m. Good luck and keep fighting the good fight.
Tomorrow, the board of the MTA will cast their votes on raising tolls on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge to a whopping $15 – and local pols are fuming.
State Senator Marty Golden, Congressman Michael Grimm and Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis issued a joint statement to the board and its chairman, Joe Lhota, urging them to kill the proposal and grant Brooklynites and Staten Islanders a measure of economic relief.
The statement follows a letter sent by the trio on December 13. In it, they wrote:
This proposal will hit the pockets of all New Yorkers who traverse the Verrazano Bridge for the purposes of work, shopping, medical care, family visits, and more. It is just unacceptable that the most expensive bridge in the world, already at $13, has the potential to become more expensive.
… In these difficult economic times, the last thing New Yorkers need is the burden of additional travel expenses. The proposal now before the MTA will further strain the budgets of millions of New York’s families and cause a loss of revenue for countless businesses. This proposal is not only misguided, it is something New Yorkers are not willing to accept.
The current proposal calls for raising the toll $2, from $13 to $15. The increase would be $1.06 for those with E-Z Pass.
Late Sunday afternoon, a man was found by the NYPD Harbor Unit in the waters below the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. Except, unlike the recent and tragic stories of those who jumped the 228 feet, this man was found alive.
The man was seen getting out of his car on and then jumping from the Upper Level section of the bridge. NYPD searched the waters for him, and pulled him out alive. He was taken to Staten Island University Hospital for care.
According to the Advance, there were eight suicide attempts since last December. Three of those were stopped.
The alarming numbers has caused the MTA to install signage which reads “Life is worth living,” along with suicide prevention telephones that connect to a suicide prevention service.
When a distraught man was threatening to jump from the ledge of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge on July 23, it took the quick thinking and compassion of two police officers, who spoke the man’s native Cantonese, to talk him out of ending his life.
Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority Officer Eddie Fung and NYPD Officer Yi Huang were the two men responsible for preventing the suicide. The officers, along with the distraught man, were all born in Hong Kong.
Unfortunately, after the harrowing incident, the officers’ identities were mixed-up and officials were unable to determine which officer was to receive accolades for the heroic deed. Turns out, it was the help of both that saved a life.
During the four-hour ordeal, Fung started the conversation with the jumper, and after a few hours Huang took over.
“At the beginning he ignored me, he was not responding,” said Fung to the New York Daily News. “After an hour, he said he had family and financial problems. He loved his daughter very much, so I focused on her.”
After about 2 p.m., Huang got there.
You don’t realize how tiring it is,” Huang said of conversing at the top of his lungs. “I relieved Eddie.”
Earlier this month, Officer Huang was honored by the City Council with a ceremony.
“Today we honor Officer Yi Huang for going above and beyond the call of duty,” Councilman Vincent Gentile said to the Brooklyn Eagle. “Officer Huang reminds us all why the New York City Police Department truly is New York’s Finest.”
Perhaps Fung is next in line for a ceremony for his contributions as well.