Squibb Park and Bridge Now Open in Brooklyn Heights

Squibb Park is now open, and I joined a few daring souls who took the first small steps over the BQE, taking into account the sign at the bridge entrance asked “Is That a Bounce in Your Step?”

I also joined a media event already in progress—a beaming Regina Myer posed for photogs, and designer Ted Zoli shared a few interesting facts with reporters about the bridge. When I’d watched it being built, it reminded me a bit of Swiss Family Robinson. But according to Zoli, the look was “adopted from techniques used in farming for a park setting.” This not only includes the wood, but the mesh wiring on either side. A few more interesting facts, courtesy of the designer:

—The bridge is made largely of a type of wood often seen on fence posts called black locust, which Zoli calls “indestructible.” It’s used throughout the park. As it ages it will turn from blond to gray. (As do many of us.)
—Although black locust is terrific structurally, it’s not often used because it’s not commercially cultivated.
—About 100,000 pounds of wood was used, which came mostly from Pennsylvania and Long Island.
—The spans were mostly prepared off-site and then set in rather quickly. The minimal need for a crane reduced the cost.
—Speaking of which, the total cost of the bridge was about $5 million.

So if you’re reading this post in time for your lunch break, ditch work have a look!

Squibb Park Bridge Opens

The gateway from Brooklyn Heights to Brooklyn Bridge Park is now open

Storified by Brooklyn Bugle· Thu, Mar 21 2013 15:52:53

We are thrilled to announce that Squibb Park and Bridge are now officially open!Head on over and check out the… <a href="http://t.co/yXjtKKXVGy" class="">fb.me/zsot3zs8</a>Brooklyn Bridge Park
@BklynBrdgPark Truman= first dog on Squibb Park Bridge. <a href="http://t.co/EyvbvdKe0f" class="">pic.twitter.com/EyvbvdKe0f</a>k-ray ridenour
Squibb Park Bridge, connecting BK Heights w @BklynBrdgPark, is now open! <a href="http://t.co/xPcv5NdIUy" class="">pic.twitter.com/xPcv5NdIUy</a>Daniel Squadron
First (chilly) stroll across the new Squibb Park Bridge. @bkheightsblog <a href="http://t.co/QBqD4WOaGc" class="">pic.twitter.com/QBqD4WOaGc</a>Joshua Goodman

Gothamist was there too, took some photos, and shot this video:

A Walk Down Squibb Pedestrian Bridge from Gothamist on Vimeo.

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  • MonroeOrange

    I’m sure the muggers can’t wait!

  • BklynJace

    Just took a walk over it. Very cool. Which means it will attract traffic, outsiders, hot dog carts and — one fears — fun. When will the disruptions to the stately torpor of Brooklyn Heights cease?

  • TeddyNYC

    You expect criminals to use the bridge to ambush people? Isn’t the bridge/park closed at night?

  • C.

    Is anything gonna be done with Squibb park or is it done? Seems kinda bare. What’s with the giant blue and green painted areas? I know it was originally going to be a skate park.

  • Jorale-man

    If spring ever comes I look forward to walking down it into the park.

    Incidentally, the BBP website has an interesting update on how they’re building the next phases of the park: http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/news/blog/construction-updates

  • Andrew Porter

    You can mug all you want, but don’t expect anyone to laugh at you.

  • Wiley E.

    Is the beaming Regina Myer mugging in the third picture?

  • Sam

    I can see the potential for danger for the drivers below on the BQE. Someone will eventually toss an object off the walkway causing a serious accident. Without raised speed bumps the cyclist and skateboarders will crash into pedestrians causing serious injures. Simple problems that should have been addressed.

  • brixtony

    It’s a beautiful structure, but you do raise some interesting, if paranoid, points. Yesterday, it was all people and dogs. They do need a garbage can or two, especially if one of the aforementioned dogs poops, and for ice cream and food wrappers. We’ll see, won’t we?

  • GHB

    If aforementioned dog poops, it can be carried off the bridge to garbage cans at either end. Why clutter such a short walkway?

  • http://www.facebook.com/gmartorelli Gianluca Martorelli

    Honestly I would love to calculate the steps to get to the park. Way too many turns. It doesn’t seem to be a shortcut to me! Am I wrong or the stip way down where the dog run is, is shorter or really almost the same? So what’s the point for a 5 million dollars bridge?

  • brixtony

    Because, humans being what they are, people will throw wrappers off the bridge or leave them to be blown into the park. Most dogs won’t “go” on a bridge like that, but there are people who won’t walk half a block to dispose of their waste, whatever it is. Also, as pointed out by others, it’s not really a short walkway. I love the bridge, but it is actually faster to walk down the hill and cut over on little Doughty St. to get to the park.

  • GHB

    You’re right. My dog would never “go” on the bridge, but I realize there are lots of lazy slugs out there who would litter. I agree that walking the hill is probably quicker, but I love walking the bridge. Can’t beat that view!

  • MonroeOrange

    in the 80′s that park was filled with a dangerous element, im just saying i hope that doesn’t once again happen. I know its not the 80′s anymore, but its still a very secluded park.

  • Wiley E.

    Another excuse to build condos to pay for park services.

  • JeremyP

    $5 million, 6 months behind schedule, and actually a longer walk then just going down Columbia Heights and turning left. WELL done, gold stars for everyone.

  • Eric

    They are the same in time and distance, according to Gothamist. Their piece is definitely worth a read.

    I’m wondering how this location was chosen instead of the foot of Montague street? It would have better for mass transit access as well as a boost to the businesses on Montague. It just seems to make more sense to put the access in the middle than at the end, where it apparently provides no advantage.

    http://gothamist.com/2013/03/22/5_million_brooklyn_pedestrian_bridg_1.php

  • Heights_Neighbor

    Gothamist, “it allowed for the reopening of Squib Park.” Huh?
    This city is messed up. This bridge made no sense from the start. A real waste of $$$! What percentage of the park maintenance will even be paid for by the condos this bridge will service?

  • Joe A

    Yeah, if I was a criminal I would want to hideout on the bridge waiting for unsuspecting victims.

    My Lord, the negativity on this board never ceases to amaze me. Muggers, dog poop, objects being hurled into traffic, waste of money, yada, yada, yada.

  • MonroeOrange

    Joe, you clearly didn’t live here in the 80s, that park was filled with crime then, bc of the isolation of the park. My comment was in no way negative, it was simply pointing out why the park was originally closed.

    But if you want a positive tone…in the 80s the sprinklers in that park were awesome!

  • Joe A

    I just thought it was a very silly comment. An open view bridge with no hiding places with only one way in and one way out would seem to be the least likely place “muggers” would feel comfortable operating. And as far as the park being a place of crime because of its isolation, well the bridge will make it much less isolated that is for sure.

    You can’t have it both ways, some are claiming it will bring in hordes of tourists and you are saying it’s isolation will be a problem. Huh? Oh, and the 80′s was a long, long time ago. Of what relevance is what happened in the 80′s to today?

  • http://www.facebook.com/heather.quinlan Heather Quinlan

    If that were true, then a bridge would make it less secluded, right? This city is so safe that the mayor’s greatest concern is soda.

  • Drew Saf

    Go now and enjoy. Nice weather days it will become unpleasant to walk – crowded. It is very enjoyable, but already today there were bicyclists riding on it “downhill”. Should be pedestrian and dog only.

  • BrooklynBugle

    It is. Bicyclists don’t read signs.

  • Drew Saf

    FYI This bridge does not go over the BQE.

  • David on Middagh

    “Bicyclists don’t read signs.”

    That’s only because we don’t litter!

  • MonroeOrange

    Of what relevance is the 80s you ask….never heard the expression ‘Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it’. The park is where the crime will happen, not the bridge, just as it did in the 80′s. The bridge was a huge huge waste of money. They should have donated the money to any charity in the world, would have been better spent.

  • Joe A

    Ahhhh…. Ok, so now the real beef with the bridge comes out. You are against it. You think it is a big waste of money. Fine, you are entitled to your opinion but to suggest that crime is a reason to be against the bridge is absurd. It was like all the people screaming about the horrible traffic and crime the Barclay’s Arena will bring. Didn’t happen. I find the fear mongering rather distasteful.

  • David on Middagh

    Fear mongering? The Parks Dept. won’t allow people onto the bridge after dark. They lock it up, because the Squibb lamps are out. Perhaps that is to discourage accidents and lawsuits; I really don’t know.

    You can’t accuse me of disliking the bridge, because I think it’s a bouncy fun ride. But Squibb Park is a weirdly layed-out trap in the plumbing of this people-pipe.

  • Joe A

    Yes, fear mongering. Because the park may have had crime issues 30 years ago is not a valid reason to suggest that the bridge would not be safe absent any evidence. That is fear mongering. The bridge/park is rightfully closed at night if the lights are not working. That is just common sense in a litigious culture and is no indication that it is based on a specific threat of “muggings”.

    Again, those that don’t like the bridge are free to voice their objections to the cost, the necessity or the asthetics but they are off base, in my opinion, to try and suggest that it will be dangerous based on conditions that existed over 30 years ago. That is fear mongering.