Sep 08 2011

Long Island Motor Parkway Bridge Series: #7 Wheeler Farmway Bridge #2 (Alley Pond)  in Queens

When the 48 miles of the Motor Parkway were completed in 1926, a total of 65 bridges were built by William K. Vanderbilt Jr. and his associates over and under the parkway. Most of the bridges were used to avoid intersections of major roads. However, many of the bridges were built to connect adjoining properties and farms. These "farmway" bridges were part of the negotiations when the Long Island Motor Parkway, Inc. purchased the right-of way. Similar to the first farmway bridge (located east of Springfield Boulevard), the second farmway bridge was built to connect sections of the Wheeler Brothers farms.

1924 Aerial- Oakland Gardens, Queens


This aerial shows the section of the Motor Parkway from Alley Road (Winchester Boulevard) (far right) to Rocky Hill Road (Springfield Boulevard) (far left). The huge farms of the Wheeler Brothers can be seen surrounding the Motor Parkway. In 1911, the Wheeler Brothers sold 13.16 acres to the Motor Parkway for the right-of-way through their property.


As part of the sale, the Motor Parkway was required to build two farmway bridges to connect the north and south sections of the Wheeler Brothers farm. The second farmway bridge was located west of Alley Road (now Winchester Boulevard).


This is a close-up of the bridge as seen in the 1924 aerial.

1928 Motor Parkway Atlas- Oakland Gardens, Queens


The Atlas shows the location of the two Wheeler Farmway Bridges. The second farmway bridge was designated as Station 31+81 and is marked as the "Alley Pond Bridge".



I believe this photo (looking north from Union Turnpike) is the only known ground-level image of the bridge taken while the Motor Parkway was still in operation.

1939 Aerial


By 1939, the bridge was used to enter the ballfields of Alley Pond Park from Union Turnpike. Note the large bridge to the west which carried the Grand Central Parkway over the Long Island Motor Parkway. This bridge was built by New York State and will be discussed in a future post focusing on Robert Moses' Motor Parkway bridges.



To further beautify the bridge, Robert Moses instructed the New York State Department of Parks to construct a brick covering on the bridge and its abutments. Photo courtesy of Margaret and George Vitale from slides created by Lester Cutting.

Current View


A recent view of the Alley Pond Bridge, one of only seven Motor Parkway bridges still standing. The bridge is located north of Union Turnpike between 234th and 235th Street.

Update: September 15, 2011


Current view looking north to the ballfields


Current view looking south to the Union Turnpike


On the Motor Parkway Bike Path looking west.

Links to related posts on and the Internet:

Long Island Motor Parkway Bridge Series: #6 Wheeler Farmway Bridge #1 in Queens

Archives: Long Island Motor Parkway Bridge Series

The Seven Intact Motor Parkway Bridges

Google Maps: Alley Pond Bridge

The 1928 Long Island Motor Parkway Atlas

Brooklyn-Queens Greenway Guide (page 61)

Archives: Long Island Motor Parkway- Bridges

Archives: Long Island Motor Parkway Bridges- Queens

Index: Archives on


Sep 12 2011 James and Gram Spina 8:51 AM

The Alley Pond Bridge is my son Gram’s absolute favorite spot of the Parkway. I suppose that has to do with its being such a big part of MY childhood experience. Gram remains convinced that in some form or other the road shall rule in NYC racing history once again at some point in the future.
Our Fall exploration this year includes the bridge near the Old Bethpage Village Village and a small area of the banking near Central Ave in Bethpage where my Grandfather was one of the Italian bricklayers. He bought property near that worksite and eventually built a home right there just a 1/4 mile from the roadway.

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