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Trans-Manhattan Expressway: Wikis


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I-95.svg US 1.svg
Trans-Manhattan Expressway
Length: 1.38 mi[1] (2.22 km)
Formed: 1962
West end: I-95.svgUS 1.svgUS 9.svg I-95 / US 1 / US 9 at George Washington Bridge
NY-9A.svg NY 9A (Henry Hudson Parkway)
Harlem River Drive Shield.svg Harlem River Drive
East end: I-95.svgUS 1.svg I-95 / US 1 at Alexander Hamilton Bridge
Counties: County of New York
Major cities: New York City, New York
Road and apartments

The Trans-Manhattan Expressway or George Washington Bridge Expressway[2] is a highway in New York City that is part of the Interstate Highway System. Though few of the millions who use it or live near it have ever heard the name, it is probably one of the shortest, busiest, and most congested named highways. It passes for barely a single mile across Manhattan at one of its narrowest points, crossing in a depressed channel through the Washington Heights neighborhood, connecting the George Washington Bridge with the Cross-Bronx Expressway by way of the Alexander Hamilton Bridge as it crosses the Harlem River. The expressway is designated as a portion of Interstate 95 and is often considered to be part of the Cross-Bronx Expressway.



The highway was originally planned as an open cut between 178th and 179th Streets, traversed by bridges carrying the major north–south streets in upper Manhattan. The City of New York approved the creation of the highway in June 1957 as part of a joint effort with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey that also called for the creation of the lower deck on the George Washington Bridge and construction of the George Washington Bridge Bus Terminal above the cut for the Expressway.[3]

The 12-lane Trans-Manhattan Expressway, with three lanes of traffic heading in each direction to and from each deck of the George Washington Bridge, opened to traffic in 1962 as part of a $60 million program to improve access roads for the George Washington Bridge, whose lower deck opened that same year. The Trans-Manhattan Expressway provides access to and from the Henry Hudson Parkway and Riverside Drive on the West Side of Manhattan, and to Amsterdam Avenue and the Harlem River Drive on the East Side.

The expressway was one of the first to use air rights over a major highway. After completion of the expressway, the George Washington Bridge Bus Terminal and a series of four high-rise apartment buildings were built over the expressway. Local traffic reporters frequently refer to congestion "under the Apartments" during morning and evening rush hours.

On the east end at Amsterdam Avenue, portals to tunnels under 178th and 179th Streets (on each side of the expressway) still exist; the expressway replaced them.[4]

Exit list

County Location Mile[1] # Destinations Notes
New York Washington Heights, Manhattan 0.00 George Washington Bridge over the Hudson River
0.55 1A 1 NY 9A (Henry Hudson Parkway) / West 178th Street (US 9 north), West 181st Street North end of US 9 overlap
1.16 1B 2 Harlem River Drive Shield.svgFDR Drive Shield.svg Harlem River Drive to FDR Drive - Manhattan Northbound exit and southbound entrance
1.38 Alexander Hamilton Bridge over the East River
I-95.svg I-95 and US 1.svg US 1 continue into The Bronx as the Cross Bronx Expressway


  • Lower Deck of George Washington Bridge Is Opened, New York Times, Aug 30, 1962.

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