Edges of the City

Franklin D Roosevelt (East River Drive)

Length: 9.4 miles

1934 – 1955: Construction

1955 – 1966: Re-Construction of non-limited access sections

Designed by Robert Moses

Purpose: To connect Lower Manhattan with the Triborough Bridge which opened in 1936

Location: Runs along the Eastern Edge of Manhattan along the East River from the Battery Park Underpass extending North to the Triborough Bridge


  • Runs along Eastern edge of Manhattan from Battery Park to the Triborough Bridge
  • Six lanes
  • Closed to commercial traffic
  • Speed Limit 40 mph


Pre Construction, Pre war

Public Officials and Business leaders proposed waterfront highways along Hudson River and the East River

1929 The Regional Plan of New York and its Environs released by the Regional Plan Association

  • Called for a depressed express highway
  • Originally called Chrystie – Forsyth Pkwy
  • Tenement districts were to be replaced by high rise buildings, offices, stores and apartments

To increase the amount of natural light and air, skyscrapers were separated by low rise buildings and parksUrban Design Manhattan

1934: Construction begins on Parkway

  • Parkway Section (Northern most section from 92nd St. North to 125th St.) to be controlled access approach to the Triborough Bridge.
    • Faced obstacles before parkway could be constructed.
    • With in 100 ft. right of way Moses constructed an alternative six lane parkway and tree lined water front.
      • In addition, Moses redesigned Washburn Wire Works and Con Ed. to accommodate new plan for roadway.
        • Solution saved 1 million dollars and twelve-hundred jobs

1942?: Construction begins on Boulevard in sections starting at Battery Park headed north to East 42nd St. then to East 49th St. and lastly to East 92nd St.

  • Boulevard sections constructed as a surface arterial blvd under the direction of Stanley Issacs (Manhattan Borough President) from Battery Park north to East 92nd St.



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