The Bow Bridge will be off limits from Monday, April 27th through the summer, for three or four months of structural work and a fresh coat of paint.
Perhaps even worse than closing the bridge, removing the old paint will require wrapping it in an unsightly tent-like structure to prevent debris from falling into the lake below. And who will want to paddle a Central Park rowboat to a construction site?
Along with repainting, the Bow Bridge repair work includes replacing the wooden decking, fixing several beams on the underside of the span, and reinforcing approaches at either end.
The Bow Bridge has been the backdrop for movies, proposals, weddings, and countless photographs, including the one I took for the cover of my NYC guidebook, Peaceful Places in New York City.
The Bow Bridge has been in films including Night at the Museum, Sweet Charity, When Harry Met Sally and Spider-Man 3. Additional films here.
Built between 1859 and 1862, the cast iron bridge, which is shaped like an archer’s bow, spans more than 60 feet of the lake. It was designed by architect Calvert Vaux and his assistant Jacob Wrey Mould. Their goal was to avoid having to build a suspension bridge in Central Park.
All repair work on Bow Bridge will be overseen by Central Park Conservancy, a non-profit organization founded in 1980 which manages and maintains the 843-acre park.
Yes, it is important to repair and maintain this important structure. But couldn’t you guys have planned better? Why couldn’t you start in March, so the bridge would be re-opened before the end of the summer?