Over the Rainbow, er, I mean, the Triboro

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Anonymous's picture

Am moving to Astoria this week and am curious to know if anyone has biked from Queens to Manhattan via the Triboro Bridge. The TA site states that there is a bike lane but I have yet to meet anyone who has used it. I can see the lane via Google Earth from Astoria to Randall's Island, but I get confused where the bike lane goes after this because of all of the over and underpasses.

Any info welcome! Thanks!!

Anonymous's picture
Ron Gentile (not verified)

Although I'm not aware of anyone having been mugged or assaulted there, I'd be careful. It's not a very well-travelled route. From Queens to Randall's it is very long and narrow with no escape. Once on Randall's, the ramp up to the bridge to Manhattan is very isolated. The bridge from Randall's to the Bronx used to involve a twisting ramp where people used to do drugs and copulate, although I think that part may have been redesigned. I would expect the path to be especially desolate this time of year.

My suggestion would be that you use the 59th St. Bridge whenever possible.

Anonymous's picture
Evan Marks (not verified)
Ditto all that

And more:

There are 2 flights of stairs - one up, one down - at the highest point of the span. Or is that 4 flights? Can't remember.

Coming from Queens, the path descends to the ground on Randalls Island (not in glorious sunlight but in the dank creepiness under the bridge) and you'll have to hunt around for the entry (danker and creepier, and hidden as well) to the Manhattan-bound path, which has a blind, uphill 180* turn and blind corners around the stanchions.

Take the 59th St Bridge.

Anonymous's picture
Hannah (not verified)
3 flights of stairs

Evan almost got it. There's one flight on the Queens side and two in the middle.

Anonymous's picture
elsa (not verified)

if drugs & copulating have been re-designed ,it's news to me--could it be that both are even better than whence I last experienced either one.Perhaps there is more to life than just biking .....I'll get back to you on that

Anonymous's picture
Comic Muted Trumpets (not verified)
wah WAH


Anonymous's picture
David (not verified)
and if that isn't enough to scare you away

there are tons of broken glass on the path. I rode this on my street bike with chucky tires and was sure I was going to get a flat.

Anonymous's picture
J (not verified)

What everyone else said. If someone wanted to lie-in-wait....

And the debris along the narrow Tri-B bike path suggests alcohol consumption, smoking (of whatever), sex, meals and not much consideration for others. Unless I'm with a group - a large, tight group - no way.

59 it!

Anonymous's picture
cprider (not verified)
bottle thrown at me

This could have happened anywhere, but just a few weeks ago I took the tri bridge to queens and some moron in a car threw a full bottle of beer at me, missing my head by a foot. It happened while going to queens, right off of the second ave entrance ramp so the passenger in the vehicle had a head on shot at me. That section was littered already with glass and debris. Be alert and as always be carefull out there folks.

Anonymous's picture
Carole (not verified)
Thanks for the suggestion.

In addition to finding some great new restaurants in Astoria, I have also found a fantastic place for sex, drugs, and alcohol. Looks like I am all set.

Thanks for riding the Triboro so I don't have to.

Anonymous's picture
Stavros Niarchos (not verified)
Speaking of restaurants....

Best Greek in Astoria- Taverna Kyclades on Ditmars (Bet. 33rd & 35th STs.)


Anonymous's picture
Nick Trippel (not verified)
There IS a new ramp under construction!!!

While I have traditionally hated crossing the Triboro - THERE IS a major construction project taking place right now on Randall's island. They are changing the bike path on Randall's Island that leads up to the bike path on the north side of the Triboro span from Randall's to Queens. Instead of the stairs and the LONG narrow walkway next to the Randall's Island approach to Queens, it is a ramp covered with an arched roof of wire mesh that makes the approach from Randall's Island much shorter - and being a ramp it eliminates the stairs on the approach to the bridge.

I don't know if they are taking out the stairs at the main span as I can't see this, but the ramp construction appears close to being done. God only knows when they might open it however.

Given the recent improvements in bike paths on Randall's Island, the combination of the new ramp, and the pedestrian/bicycle bridge from the south end of Randall's/Ward's Island to 103rd Street in Manhattan, it could possibly be a decent alternative to the 59th Street bridge - which I have traditionally MUCH preferred to the Triboro.

Incidentally the TA Century goes over the Triboro, and while the bridge path has other problems it is a spectacular view.

I have not seen much info on the web about this project, I mostly figured it out by seeing the construction going on and looking up the construction company doing the work on the web. I forget the name of the construction company now.

Anonymous's picture
Hannah (not verified)

I'm confused--both the north and south bike exits onto Randall's Island have been ramped for as long as I've been riding the bridge, if my memory serves me correctly. The stairs are in the main span, as you note, and on the Queens side.

The 103rd Street footbridge between RI and Manhattan is not open this time of year, or overnight ever, so it's not the most reliable route.


Anonymous's picture
Nick Trippel (not verified)
re: confused


I stand corrected. Thanks for pointing out my mistake. The north side does (did) have a switchback ramp and not stairs. I haven't done it in a while, but I checked and you're right.

As for the 103rd Street footbridge, I've never quite figured out the rhyme or reason to when they close it. I have gotten to Randall's Island (RI) during the winter before so it's not always closed. I don't think I'd want to be out on Randall's at night anyway...

That said, for the recreational rider on the UES who wants to go out to NW Queens the new ramp should make the trip much shorter and more enjoyable as it would minimize interaction with car traffic and connects directly to the East River Greenway. Most of the route would be on RI which has blessedly few cars. One of the many reasons I like it.

Anonymous's picture
Hannah (not verified)
footbridge hours

"The official footbridge hours, from the RISF site all the way at the bottom of the list of possible ways to get to the island ( http://www.risf.org/direction2.html ), are

April 1-30: 6:00am-6:30pm
May 1 - September 30: 6:00am-9:00pm
October 1-30: Open 6:00am-6:30pm
October 31 - March 25: Closed

However, they don't always stick to the hours. A year or so ago I think the bridge was closed during part of the summer for construction. Sometimes it stays open longer than it's supposed to on any given night, but it always feels risky to count on that.


Anonymous's picture
Claudette (not verified)

Even though the ramp on the 59th street bridge is kind of a problem, it is for sure the more direct route to Astoria.

Anonymous's picture
Harry (not verified)
Testify About Randall's Island Bike Access etc...


The letters and postcards and organizing strategies are working!

This is your chance to be heard now!!!

We need you. Come one, come all....

City Council Parks Committee Hearing

Randall's Island

City Hall
January 31st
10 AM (Come when you can for as long as you can...)

Press Conference 9:30 AM (in the works)

Talking Points:

Stop the Aquatic Development Complex that would destroy 21% of the users ball fields in the first place!

No pay to play for private schools that cut out the public interest

Open the East Harlem 103rd Street Bike/ Pedestrian Bridge

Implement the South Bronx Greenway

Explore other accesses possibilities

Environmental Impacts Statements for proposed power plants on south and north ends

Protect the shoreline and paddling access

Community representation on decision making bodies

Revisit the ""Randall's Island Management Plan"" which is not an officially approved document


cycling trips