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University Heights Bridge centennial

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This year’s Bronx Week, an annual 10-day event stretching from June 12 to 22 got off to a ceremonious start, as the University Heights Bridge, celebrating its centennial, was rededicated in grand fashion.

Borough President Adolfo Carrion Jr. met his Manhattan counterpart Scott Stringer on the Bronx county boundary on the University Heights Bridge at W. Fordham Road and the Major Deegan Expressway to kick off the festive days ahead.

“New York City infrastructure is what allowed this city to grow and allowed people from all over the world to come and find opportunity,” Carrion noted, before moving to discuss those Bronxites who have taken advantage of opportunit­ies. 

In addition to celebrating the centennial of the bridge, which was made a city landmark in 1984, Carrion announced this year’s inductees into the coveted Bronx Walk of Fame.

This years inductees are hip-hop pioneer Grandmaster Caz, actor Adam Rodriquez of CSI Miami, break-dancing performers Rock Steady Crew, doo-wop musicians Larry Chance and the Earls, and everyone’s favorite therapist, Dr. Ruth Westheimer.

The bridge served as a focal point for the celebration, which will highlight the best and brightest of the borough.

“This is an entire week of celebrating all of Bronx life,” Carrion said, “everything that makes the Bronx wonderful.”

Highlights of Bronx Week include the tenth Annual Bronx Bankers Breakfast on June 13, the sixth annual diva spa to combat domestic violence on June 16, and the Bronx Ball on June 21. The induction ceremony for the Walk of Fame will occur on Sunday, June 22.

Carrion and Stringer strode across the bridge from the perspective ends, and held a press conference at the county line. Carrion remarked that through synergy, government could do more.

“Today is a very special day for the University Heights Bridge,” Carrion said. “We are successful as a city because we connected the five boroughs and incorporated them together as a unit.” 

The crowd included a marching band from DeWitt Clinton High School and City Councilman Miguel Martinez, as well as Bronx county historian Lloyd Ultan, who remarked about the bridge’s versatility.

The University Heights Bridge was originally opened at the site of the current Broadway Bridge linking Manhattan and the Bronx in 1895. It was deemed unsuitable for use when the IRT expanded across Broadway around a decade later, and was put on a barge and floated downstream in 1905, where it was modified and opened for vehicular traffic in its present location on January 8, 1908. It was completely overhauled in 1989 and 1990. 

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