The Brooklyn Bridge: The Caisson Disease
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Though Washington Roebling was unable to attend the ceremony and rarely visited the site again , he held a celebratory banquet at his house on the day of the bridge opening. Further festivity included the performance by a band, gunfire from ships, and a fireworks display. At the time of opening, the Brooklyn Bridge was not complete; the proposed public transit across the bridge was still being tested, while the Brooklyn approach was being completed.
Barnum 's most famous attractions, Jumbo the elephant, led a parade of 21 elephants over the Brooklyn Bridge. This helped to lessen doubts about the bridge's stability while also promoting Barnum's circus. Patronage across the Brooklyn Bridge increased in the years after it opened; a million people paid to cross in the six first months. The bridge carried 8. In , traffic backups due to a dead horse caused one of the truss cords to buckle.
By , due to the popularity of the Brooklyn Bridge, there were proposals to construct other bridges across the East River between Manhattan and Long Island. Though tolls had been instituted for carriages and cable-car customers since the bridge's opening, pedestrians were spared from the tolls originally. The first major upgrade to the Brooklyn Bridge commenced in , when a contract for redesigning the roadways were awarded to David B. While the rebuilding of the span was ongoing, a fallout shelter was constructed beneath the Manhattan approach in anticipation of the Cold War.
The abandoned space in one of the masonry arches was stocked with emergency survival supplies for a potential nuclear attack by the Soviet Union ; these supplies remained in place half a century later. Simultaneous with the rebuilding of the Brooklyn Bridge, a double-decked viaduct for the BQE was being built through an existing steel overpass of the bridge's Brooklyn approach ramp. On the Manhattan side, the city approved a controversial rebuilding of the Manhattan entrance plaza in The project, which would add a grade-separated junction over Park Row, was hotly contested because it would require the demolition of 21 structures, including the old New York World Building.
This required the closure of one roadway at a time, as was done during the rebuilding of the bridge itself. The Brooklyn Bridge gradually deteriorated due to age and neglect. While it had full-time dedicated maintenance workers before World War II, that number dropped to five by the late 20th century, and the city as a whole only had bridge maintenance workers. In some places, half of the strands in the cables were broken. In June , two of the diagonal stay cables snapped, seriously injuring a pedestrian   who later died. As part of the project, the bridge's original suspender cables installed by J.
Lloyd Haigh were replaced by Bethlehem Steel in , marking the cables' first replacement since construction. Additional problems persisted, and in , high levels of lead were discovered near the bridge's towers. The concrete deck had been installed during the s renovations and had a lifespan of about 60 years. After the collapse of the IW bridge in Minneapolis , public attention focused on the condition of bridges across the U. The New York Times reported that the Brooklyn Bridge approach ramps had received a "poor" rating during an inspection in As of [update] , about 10, pedestrians and 3, cyclists use the pathway on an average weekday. The NYCDOT also indicated in that it planned to reinforce the Brooklyn Bridge's foundations to prevent it from sinking, as well as repair the masonry arches on the approach ramps, which had been damaged by Hurricane Sandy in In early , City Council speaker Corey Johnson and the nonprofit Van Alen Institute hosted an international contest to solicit plans for the redesign of the bridge's walkway.
The bike lane would allow the existing promenade to be used by pedestrians. Horse-drawn carriages have been allowed to use the Brooklyn Bridge's roadways since its opening. Originally, each of the two roadways carried two lanes of a different direction of traffic. Thereafter, the only vehicles allowed on the Brooklyn Bridge were horse-drawn. Since , the main roadway has carried six lanes of automobile traffic.
Because of the roadway's height 11 ft 3. Vehicular access to the bridge is provided by a complex series of ramps on both sides of the bridge. There are two entrances to the bridge's pedestrian promenade on either side. Formerly, rail traffic operated on the Brooklyn Bridge as well. Cable cars and elevated railroads used the bridge until , while trolleys ran until The New York and Brooklyn Bridge Railway, a cable car service, began operating on September 25, ; it ran on the inner lanes of the bridge, between terminals at the Manhattan and Brooklyn ends.
They were powered from a generating station under the Brooklyn approach. There were 24 cable cars in total. Initially, the service ran with single-car trains, but patronage soon grew so much that by October , two-car trains were in use. The line carried three million people in the first six months, nine million in , and nearly 20 million in following the opening of the Brooklyn Union Elevated Railroad. Accordingly, the track layout was rearranged and more trains were ordered. The elevated trains were then coupled to the cable cars, which would pull the passenger carriages across the bridge. The BRT did not run any elevated train through services from to In , the overpass was reopened after it became clear that the connection would not be built.
With the opening of the Independent Subway System in and the subsequent unification of all three companies into a single entity in , the elevated services started to decline, and the Park Row and Sands Street stations were greatly reduced in size. The Fifth Avenue and Fulton Street services across the Brooklyn Bridge were discontinued in and respectively, and the elevated tracks were abandoned permanently with the withdrawal of Myrtle Avenue services in A plan for trolley service across the Brooklyn Bridge was presented in On March 5, , the streetcars also stopped running, and the bridge was redesigned exclusively for automobile traffic.
The Brooklyn Bridge has an elevated promenade open to pedestrians in the center of the bridge, located 18 feet 5. Further exacerbating the situation, these "pinch points" are some of the most popular places to take pictures. A center line was painted to separate cyclists from pedestrians in , creating one of the city's first dedicated bike lanes. In , these were swapped, with cyclists taking the northern side and pedestrians taking the southern side. Cyclists are now prohibited from the upper pedestrian lane.
Pedestrian access to the bridge from the Brooklyn side is from either the median of Adams Street at its intersection with Tillary Street or a staircase near Prospect Street between Cadman Plaza East and West. In Manhattan, the pedestrian walkway is accessible from crosswalks at the intersection of the bridge and Centre Street, or through a staircase leading to Park Row. While the bridge has always permitted the passage of pedestrians, the promenade facilitates movement when other means of crossing the East River have become unavailable. During transit strikes by the Transport Workers Union in and , people commuting to work used the bridge; they were joined by Mayors Ed Koch and Michael Bloomberg , who crossed as a gesture to the affected public.
During the blackouts, many crossing the bridge reported a swaying motion. There have been several notable jumpers from the Brooklyn Bridge. Duffy jumped and was not seen again. Other notable feats have taken place on or near the bridge. In , Giorgio Pessi piloted what was then one of the world's largest airplanes, the Caproni Ca. On March 1, , Lebanese-born Rashid Baz opened fire on a van carrying members of the Chabad-Lubavitch Orthodox Jewish Movement, striking year-old student Ari Halberstam and three others traveling on the bridge.
He was apparently acting out of revenge for the Hebron massacre of Palestinian Muslims a few days prior to the incident. Several potential attacks or disasters have also been averted. In , police disarmed a stick of dynamite placed under the Brooklyn approach,  and an artist in Manhattan was later arrested for the act. At a. Seven artists climbed the largest bridges connected to Manhattan "to replace violence and fear in mass media for one day". When each of the artists had reached the tops of the bridges, they ignited bright-yellow flares at the same moment, resulting in rush hour traffic disruption, media attention, and the arrest of the climbers, though the charges were later dropped.
Halpern attempted another "bridging" "social sculpture" in , when he planted a radio receiver, gunpowder and fireworks in a bucket atop one of the towers. On October 1, , more than protesters with the Occupy Wall Street movement were arrested while attempting to march across the bridge on the roadway. On July 22, , the two American flags on the flagpoles atop each tower were found to have been replaced by bleached-white American flags.
The artists said that the flags were meant to celebrate "the beauty of public space" and the anniversary of the death of German-born John Roebling, and they denied that it was an "anti-American statement". The 50th-anniversary celebrations on May 24, , included a ceremony featuring an airplane show, ships, and fireworks,  as well as a banquet. A flotilla of ships visited the harbor, officials held parades,   and Grucci Fireworks held a fireworks display that evening. The th anniversary of the bridge's opening was celebrated by a five-day event on May 22—26, , which included a live performance by the Brooklyn Philharmonic , a special lighting of the bridge's towers, and a fireworks display. At the time of construction, contemporaries marveled at what technology was capable of, and the bridge became a symbol of the era's optimism.
John Perry Barlow wrote in the late 20th century of the "literal and genuinely religious leap of faith" embodied in the bridge's construction, saying that the "Brooklyn Bridge required of its builders faith in their ability to control technology". A bronze plaque is attached to the Manhattan anchorage, which was constructed on the site of the Samuel Osgood House at 1 Cherry Street in Manhattan. Named after Samuel Osgood , a Massachusetts politician and lawyer, it was built in and served as the first U. Another plaque on the Manhattan side of the pedestrian promenade, installed by the city in , indicates the bridge's status as a city landmark.
The Brooklyn Bridge has had an impact on idiomatic American English. For example, references to "selling the Brooklyn Bridge" abound in American culture, sometimes as examples of rural gullibility but more often in connection with an idea that strains credulity. George C. Parker and William McCloundy were two early 20th-century con men who had perpetrated this scam successfully on unwitting tourists. As a tourist attraction, the Brooklyn Bridge is a popular site for clusters of love locks , wherein a couple inscribes a date and their initials onto a lock, attach it to the bridge, and throw the key into the water as a sign of their love. To highlight the Brooklyn Bridge's cultural status, the city proposed building a Brooklyn Bridge museum near the bridge's Brooklyn end in the s.
The bridge is often featured in wide shots of the New York City skyline in television and film,  and has been depicted in numerous works of art. The Brooklyn Bridge has also been lauded for its architecture. One of the first positive reviews was "The Bridge As A Monument", a Harper's Weekly piece written by architecture critic Montgomery Schuyler and published a week after the bridge's opening. In the piece, Schuyler wrote: "It so happens that the work which is likely to be our most durable monument, and to convey some knowledge of us to the most remote posterity, is a work of bare utility; not a shrine, not a fortress, not a palace, but a bridge.
Henry James , writing in the early 20th century, cited the bridge as an ominous symbol of the city's transformation into a "steel-souled machine room". From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see Brooklyn Bridge disambiguation. Bridge between Manhattan and Brooklyn, New York. Brooklyn Bridge. National Register of Historic Places. National Historic Landmark. NYC Landmark No. Under construction, c. Play media. See also: Brooklyn Bridge trolleys. Brooklyn Bridge plaques. The eyebars closer to the anchor plates are progressively smaller. New York City Department of Transportation. Retrieved May 24, August 24, Retrieved June 18, Brooklyn Citizen. New-York Tribune. July 29, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
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June 23, Retrieved June 17, The New York Times. ISSN Retrieved July 4, Greenwood Icons. Greenwood Press. ISBN Two Lectures Delivered March 6 and 13, Wynkoop, Printer. McGraw Publishing Company. Retrieved July 5, Hartford Courant. January 11, Retrieved August 14, — via newspapers. June 29, Retrieved May 11, Skate Newswire. May 10, The New York Sun. June 11, Retrieved June 26, — via newspapers. Retrieved July 1, Retrieved July 8, Retrieved July 2, New York Magazine. July 10, Retrieved February 1, Islands of the Mid-Maine Coast. University of Georgia Press. Retrieved February 16, Structure magazine.
November 5, New York Daily Herald. April 18, Retrieved June 18, — via newspapers. May 24, Retrieved June 26, Retrieved April 23, Brooklyn Savings Bank. April 16, Retrieved April 23, — via Internet Archive. April 10, D January 25, The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Archived from the original on October 19, Retrieved November 26, Brooklyn Daily Eagle. September 10, Retrieved June 18, — via Brooklyn Public Library; newspapers. September 11, Retrieved June 21, June 30, Retrieved October 27, Historic Bridges.
Retrieved October 3, The History Channel. The Construction of the Brooklyn Bridge". Museum of the City of New York. Combined Volume Value Edition, 8th ed. Kindle Locations — OCLC December 3, New York Herald. May 9, Emily went to school to earn a law degree in later years and wrote early popular articles about gender equality. Brooklyn Bridge — New York City. Image credit — K. Reichert [ … ] The Brooklyn Bridge was the first suspension bridge to use steel wire in its construction, an idea pioneered by the original designer John Augustus Roebling.
The engineer proudly proclaimed steel the metal of the future, which was certainly proven by later developments. The bridge opened on May 24, and received leisurely use for the first five days. On May 30th, however, things changed. Some say that a woman tripped; others claim a rumor of an impending collapse stated the stampede. The resulting panic caused 12 deaths and 36 or more serious injuries. Engineers decided to build vaults under the bridge for storing wine at a continuous cool temperature.
The granite vaults, cooled by the East River, were 50 feet tall. One of the contractors, J. Lloyd Haigh, tried to substitute sub-par wires for cables supporting the bridge. Embarrassed by the swindle, the project increased security measures and increased the wire beyond what was necessary to keep the public from learning the truth. The Brooklyn Bridge was the longest suspension bridge in the world for 20 years, but records fell rapidly during the Industrial Revolution. Reaching 1, feet with its main span, the total length of the bridge was 5, feet. It was surpassed by its twin across the East River, the Williamsburg Bridge, which measured 7, feet. The Manhattan side of the bridge displays a bronze plaque that commemorates the site as the location of the first presidential mansion.
Yes, George Washington really slept here during the first 10 months of his fledgling presidency. The bridge took 14 years to build, and the project used workers. H-beam sections typical column sections, due to resistance to bending in all axis may be driven at angles "raked" to rock or other firmer soils; the H-beams are left extended above the base. A reinforced concrete plug may be placed under the water, a process known as Tremie concrete placement. When the caisson is dewatered, this plug acts as a pile cap, resisting the upward forces of the subsoil. A monolithic caisson or simply a monolith is larger than the other types of caisson, but similar to open caissons. Such caissons are often found in quay walls, where resistance to impact from ships is required.
Shallow caissons may be open to the air, whereas pneumatic caissons sometimes called pressurized caissons , which penetrate soft mud , are bottomless boxes sealed at the top and filled with compressed air to keep water and mud out at depth. An airlock allows access to the chamber. Workers, called sandhogs , move mud and rock debris called muck from the edge of the workspace to a water-filled pit, connected by a tube called the muck tube to the surface. A crane at the surface removes the soil with a clamshell bucket.
The water pressure in the tube balances the air pressure, with excess air escaping up the muck tube. The pressurized air flow must be constant to ensure regular air changes for the workers and prevent excessive inflow of mud or water at the base of the caisson. When the caisson hits bedrock, the sandhogs exit through the airlock and fill the box with concrete, forming a solid foundation pier. A pneumatic compressed-air caisson has the advantage of providing dry working conditions, which is better for placing concrete.
It is also well suited for foundations for which other methods might cause settlement of adjacent structures. Construction workers who leave the pressurized environment of the caisson must decompress at a rate that allows symptom-free release of inert gases dissolved in the body tissues if they are to avoid decompression sickness , a condition first identified in caisson workers, and originally named "caisson disease" in recognition of the occupational hazard. Construction of the Brooklyn Bridge , which was built with the help of pressurised caissons, resulted in numerous workers being either killed or permanently injured by caisson disease during its construction. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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