The Queensboro Bridge, also known as the 59th Street Bridge was built in 1909 and carries approximately 200,000 vehicles every day. One of the most traveled bridges in the world, it connects Manhattan at 59th Street to Long Island City, Queens.
The upper level of the Queensboro Bridge has four lanes of automobile traffic and provides an excellent view of the bridge’s cantilever truss structure and the New York City skyline. The lower level has six lanes, the inner four for automobile traffic and the outer two for either automobile traffic or pedestrians and bicycles. The North Outer Roadway was converted into a permanent pedestrian walk and bicycle path in September 2000.
- Manhattan to Roosevelt Island span length (cantilever): 1,182 ft (360 m)
- Roosevelt Island span length: 630 ft
- Roosevelt Island to Queens span length (cantilever): 984 ft
- Side span lengths: 469 and 459 ft
- Total length between anchorages: 3724 ft
- Total length including approaches: 7449 ft
- In 2007, the 59th St Bridge carried approximately 91,000 vehicles in each direction daily
The Queensboro Bridge is the first entry point into Manhattan in the course of the New York City Marathon and the last exit point out of Manhattan in the Five Borough Bike Tour.
Over the years, a number of politicians have tried to implement tolls on the Queensboro Bridge, along with the other East River Bridges. The tolls have been designed to generate revenue to fill a budget gap, support the MTA’s NYC subway and bus public transportation system, or fund repairs of NYC bridges and tunnels. All of these proposals have failed, much in part to the efforts of residents and politicians in Queens and Brooklyn who assert that they must use the bridge because public transportation into Manhattan is not available to them.
TOLLS: No tolls in either direction.
NYC DRIVING DIRECTIONS FOR THE QUEENSBORO BRIDGE
From Queens: enter the Lower Level from Queens Plaza (undergoing construction and ongoing re-routing). Enter the Upper Level from 21st St.
From Manhattan: Enter the Upper Level on the North side of E 57th St between 1st and 2nd Avenues. Enter the Lower Level going Westbound on E 59th St between 1st and 2nd Avenues or by making a sharp left on E 59th St from Southbound 2nd Avenue.
Entering Queens: The Lower Level exits onto Queens Boulevard. The Upper Level has exit points to Roosevelt Island and Queens Boulevard.
From Manhattan: The Lower Level puts you right on the Southbound 2nd Ave. From the Upper Level you can choose between the Northbound 1st Ave or the Southbound 2nd Ave.
Walk Across the Queensboro Bridge!
From Manhattan, 60th Street between 2nd and 1st Avenues
From Brooklyn, Queens Plaza and Crescent Street
Find out more about walking and cycling across the Queensboro Bridge from Transportation Alternatives.