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Gimbel's traverse, up close | by moufle
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Gimbel's traverse, up close

Photo taken from the south side of the bridge. Detail in the copper cladding is gorgeous.

 

The bridge was built in 1925, to connect the famed Gimbel's department store (on the north side) to an annex across 32nd Street. According to the superintendant, Gimbels also put in a freight tunnel under the street. It's still there but not used.

 

The current owners bought the building in 1978. At some point in the 1980s, they considered demolishing the bridge. Engineers bid on the job. But for some reason, it didn't happen (phew!). There are only two entrances that remain, both in the building on the north side, which is now the Manhattan Mall.

 

The bridge's top level/roof was originally all glass but was replaced in the 1990s (not sure of the exact year). To do the job, the owners had to smash through a wall and use a ladder because the entrances to the top level had been walled off on both ends. It's strange—if I were the owner, I'd want my offices right in the middle of the bridge (triplex!).

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Taken on February 14, 2006