Jul 23 2011

From the Ron Ridolph Collection- Demolition of the Mineola LIRR Motor Parkway Bridge

In the early 1980s, Ron Ridolph photographed the Long Island Motor Parkway from Fresh Meadows to Lake Ronkonkoma. Among the events documented by Ron were the 1983 demolition of the Motor Parkway bridges over the Long Island Rail Road at Mineola and Williston Park/East Williston. Here are Ron's photos of the Mineola LIRR Motor Parkway Bridge before and after the demolition.

As shown by the 1928 Motor Parkway Atlas, the Mineola LIRR Bridge was located just north of Old Country Road.

The demolition of the Motor Parkway LIRR bridges was funded by the MTA and the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Looking south, the northern abutment and the railroad trestle bridge prior to demolition.

Due to the lighter train schedule, most of the demolition was conducted at night...resulting in a fireworks-like display.

The southern abutment after the bridge was taken down.

Thanks Ron for sharing the Motor Parkway photos from your collection.

Links to related posts on VanderbiltCupRaces.com

From the Ron Ridolph Collection- Demolition of the East Williston LIRR Motor Parkway Bridge

Archives: Ron Ridolph Collection: Images of the Long Island Motor Parkway

Archives: Long Island Motor Parkway

Archives: Long Island Motor Parkway-Nassau County


Jul 24 2011 Joseph Oesterle 1:07 AM

In the spring of 1983 I was 16 years old and got a job as a busboy in Wheatley Hill Golf Club.  I saw old maps there leading the parkway south over Hillside Ave.  The next Sunday morning, I went to church early, and set out on my bicycle following the parkway and the power lines south.  From the south I saw the LIRR bridge.  I went around and approached it from the north.  I climbed dangerously out on a barbed wire ledge from the parking lot of 1 Old Country Rd.  Down under powerlines through brush to the base of the bridge.  I climbed the side wall from the north end.  I remember my knee was scraped and bloddy.  As soon as I stood on the bridge I swore it swayed.  So to test my theory I jump up high and let myself stomp down.  No doubt, that bridge moved.  Unlike the LIRR LIMP bridge in Albertson which was 100% solid.  I remember the steel side walls of the bridge being lower that Albertson.  In Albertson I could lean against the side, and my center of gravity was far below the steel side walls.  Here, I was too afraid to even go near the edge.  The were pot holes where I could look down and see rebar.  My clearest memory was the south side.  The motor parkway and the cement sidewalk (as I used to call them as a kid) extended off the bridge, but the land underneath was gone.  So the roadway was just hanging there.  The blacktop part had seperated from the sidewalk.  The sidewalks extending further away from the bridge than the road part, before sagging with gravity.  A train was approaching from the east.  As it came close, the conductor or that trains eyes and mine locked, until he disappeared under me.  The entire brigde shook.  I did not have to be a genius to know I was in a place that was unsafe.  I climbed down, made it back to my bicycle, and headed home.  I remember I stopped by the bridge in Albertson on the way home.
About two weeks later, my dad and I were in the car as my mom was shopping in the center just oppostie Voice Rd on the eastern side of Glen Cove Road.  I told my dad to take a ride, I wanted to show him something.  We drove down Voice Road, back behind the building at the far northern end of Voice Road to where we could see the bridge.  There was a work crew taking it down.  I used to joke with friends that I was probably the last person to climb on that bridge before it was dismantled. 
Thanks to you and Ron for the pictures. 
Your Fan
-joe o

Leave a Comment