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Brooklyn Bridges 125th Birthday One Hundred and Twenty-five years after it's construction, the Brooklyn Bridge remains a powerful symbol of engineering might and imagination, and a revered fixture in the landscape of the nation's largest city. And it can still attract a crowd, like the one at the bridge's 125th birthday blowout Thursday night, May 22, 2008, which featured fireworks, a Navy flyover, a colorful new lighting scheme, a musical tribute to honor the storied span, and even a birthday cake in the shape of the bridge. ********* More Info in Comments:
Tags: brooklyn  bridge  125  years  new  york  celebration 
Added: 23rd May 2008
Views: 1603
Posted By: Naomi
Posted by: Naomi on 2008-05-23 
The 6,000-foot-long landmark is one of the nation's oldest suspension bridges and among its most treasured. It opened on May 24, 1883.

Tourists flock to see its interplay of architectural grace and muscle and its commanding views of the Manhattan skyline. Historians note its role in shaping the city: It linked Manhattan with what was then a largely rural Brooklyn, helping spur a growth spurt in the more rustic borough, Schweiger said. Brooklyn's population grew by 42 percent between 1880 and 1890, while Manhattan's grew by about 26 percent, census figures show.

Engineers laud the bridge's strength and innovation.

There was nothing like this before, at least nothing like this that was of this scale built before.

The Brooklyn Bridge is roughly six times as long as the biggest earlier bridge of its type, and its Gothic-arched stone towers and web of steel cables are technically impressive even by today's standards.

Building the bridge took 13 years, cost $15 million and claimed several lives, including that of its celebrated designer, John Roebling. He succumbed to an infection after being hurt while looking over the site. His son, Washington Roebling, took over the project.

Its dedication was dubbed 'People's Day', and featured two parades, an hourlong fireworks show and an appearance by President Chester Arthur. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle called the occasion 'an enormous stride in the march of American progress'. Harper's Weekly, a popular illustrated magazine, declared the bridge the manmade work 'most likely to become our most durable monument, and to convey some knowledge of us to the most remote posterity.'

The bridge now carries about 126,000 cars per day, at the city's last count in 2006, and is used by numerous cyclists and pedestrians. It has been refurbished repeatedly, and some parts have been strengthened. But the towers, main cables and main beams are original.

The city plans to spend $250 million to $300 million fixing ramps and painting the bridge, starting early next year, city Department of Transportation spokesman Ted Timbers said Wednesday.

The anniversary events included performances by the Brooklyn Philharmonic and Oscar-winning composer Marvin Hamlisch, who said Thursday he had written 'a little sweetness' of a tune for the occasion.
Posted by: Classico on 2008-05-23 
What a marvel!

I have crossed the Bridge several hundred times over the years whether on foot or via car. It is an amazing monument to the greatness that is Brooklyn and NYC.
Posted by: Steve on 2008-05-23 
The architecture of the bridge is really beautiful!
Posted by: Marty6697 on 2008-05-23 
Awesome!! What an enginering masterpiece! 125 years ago! Amazing!
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