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Author Topic: Funnest way to drive through NYC  (Read 10256 times)

404inthe404

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Funnest way to drive through NYC
« on: March 03, 2015, 07:08:30 PM »

Tomorrow I am driving from Atlantic City to Bradley International Airport north of Hartford. I do not anticipate time being an issue at all. What's the funnest way through NYC? I'd prefer to stay with freeways, even gridlocked freeways. On the way down here I stuck with I-95 all the way through and I'm looking to change it up on the way back.

Passenger car, single occupant, EZ-Pass box.
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NE2

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2015, 07:13:56 PM »

The Five Boro Bike Tour :bigass:

I-278 is the obvious choice. If you want something longer, try the Belt-Cross Island. Or you could go down one side of Manhattan and up the other. Whether you'll actually find any of them fun is not my call.
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404inthe404

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2015, 07:18:14 PM »

The Five Boro Bike Tour :bigass:

I-278 is the obvious choice. If you want something longer, try the Belt-Cross Island. Or you could go down one side of Manhattan and up the other. Whether you'll actually find any of them fun is not my call.

Okay I was leaning towards I-278 anyway. So it has been decided. Thank you. Thread closed.
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empirestate

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2015, 01:00:21 AM »

Too bad you closed the thread before checking the weather…but then, since your definition of "funnest" includes gridlocked freeways, this might jive well with your expectations.

(It may be that you've already done the funnest route, with I-95. But I've found it's actually funner northbound. That said, if you can work in the FDR Drive, that's pretty fun.)

Thesis: "fun" is actually a noun, not an adjective. Discuss.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2015, 01:21:41 AM »

Fun for me would be Newark Bay Extension down 440 to the Bayonne Bridge, SIE east over Verrazano to Gowanus, up the BQE to the Brooklyn Bridge, up the FDR to the Harlem River Drive to the Willis Avenue Bridge, then south in the Deegan and east on the Bruckner to the Hutch (since you already took the New England Thruway down).
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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2015, 03:33:36 AM »

When I was in a similar situation last summer, I took 95. The bridge was expensive but nice. I chose the time of my crossing carefully though to avoid too much traffic.

(Also, according to the OED, "fun" is a noun and an adjective.)
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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2015, 08:45:44 AM »

How about I-278 through Staten Island and Brooklyn, across the Brooklyn Bridge, up the FDR Drive through Manhattan, across the Willis Avenue Bridge, and then up I-87?  When you get past the city line, you could take either the Cross County Parkway or I-287 to eventually wind up on Hutch, I-95, or I-684, which will take up to Connecticut.
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empirestate

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2015, 08:53:08 AM »

When I was in a similar situation last summer, I took 95. The bridge was expensive but nice. I chose the time of my crossing carefully though to avoid too much traffic.

(Also, according to the OED, "fun" is a noun and an adjective.)

Well there's no doubt it's used as such, so it has to appear in dictionaries. But why does its superlative "-est" form raise red flags to our ears? Are there other one-syllable adjectives that can't be made superlative with "-est"?
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1995hoo

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2015, 09:03:56 AM »

If you're interested in more than just the controlled-access highways,* and you don't mind a route that is somewhat out of the way and will add some time, I'd consider:

—Go over the Verrazano (upper level, you can see more). Stay in the left lane and take the exit for the Belt Parkway towards Kennedy Airport. Take the signs seriously when they tell you to slow down for the sharp curve!

—Merge onto the Belt Parkway and follow it to Exit 7 for Ocean Parkway. I'm pretty sure it's Exit 7.

—Turn left at the light onto Ocean Parkway. Follow it straight ahead  for around five miles and it eventually becomes the Prospect Expressway, which in turn brings you back to the Gowanus. You can then pick up the other suggestions by connecting through the Battery Tunnel or go up the BQE.

The reasons I suggest this alternative: (a) The ramp from the Verrazano to the Belt Parkway is a somewhat interesting ramp given its design, which was needed both to cram it in without impacting Fort Hamilton too much and to carry traffic from sea level at the Belt Parkway on up to the bridge. (b) Ocean Parkway is a nice tree-lined drive, and if you catch the green wave you can ride for a good long distance without stopping. Ocean Parkway and Eastern Parkway pre-date the Robert Moses era and were proposed by Frederick Law Olmsted (who liked the idea of "park ways," literally park-like roads extending green areas through the city), so you're going even further back into New York road history. (c) I've never thought the Gowanus was at all interesting except in the sense of seeing a hopelessly obsolete and dilapidated highway.



edited to note: *Recognizing you said in your first post you prefer to stick with "freeways" (which in New York are called "expressways"), I still think the Gowanus is not interesting and merits an exception. Alternatively, the Belt Parkway past Bay Ridge heading towards the city is scenic because of the view of the skyline. Getting to that road when you're coming from Staten Island is a mild hassle, however. There are two easy options:

(a) Take the left exit to the Belt Parkway as described above, then take the next exit (Exit 4 for Bay 8 Street), cut a U-turn, and get back on the Belt Parkway going the other way.

(b) Stay in the right lane on the Verrazano, take the first exit to 92 Street, make a left, go left onto 4 Avenue where the White Castle used to be (there's an office building on the left with a Pizzeria Uno at ground level), and follow 4 Avenue to the light at Shore Road. On the far side there's a ramp on the right to the Belt Parkway towards the city.

The view of New York Harbor, the Statue of Liberty, and lower Manhattan makes this one of the more interesting parts of the Belt Parkway, IMO (and it's probably the part I've travelled the least because my grandparents lived in Bay Ridge and so I almost never had any reason to travel that segment):

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.634113,-74.038824,3a,75y,8.4h,85.15t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1si4sC2N0QN6mCIoeWHd14Yg!2e0
« Last Edit: March 04, 2015, 09:24:49 AM by 1995hoo »
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hbelkins

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2015, 01:07:03 PM »

*Recognizing you said in your first post you prefer to stick with "freeways" (which in New York are called "expressways")

Certainly not putting you in the same category of the deceased person I'm about to mention, but why is this nomenclature such an issue for some people?

Years ago, I posted on MTR looking for the best routing to take coming south on the Thruway to make sure I hit all five boroughs (counties) in NYC and then end up back west of the Hudson in Nyack, where I had a room reserved at a motel there. Randy Hersh couldn't resist chiming in to mouth off about his continued hatred for me. One of his many points was how stupid I was for saying I wanted an all-freeway routing. I was an idiot because they're called expressways in New York and freeways in California. Well of course I knew that, but the technical definition of an expressway can include a road with traffic signals, and I'm not a fan of a signal-choked city surface route even in a smaller burg like Louisville or Lexington, much less the Big Apple.
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NE2

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2015, 01:10:39 PM »

Freeways are also called parkways in NYC. Unless they're Mosholu.
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hbelkins

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #11 on: March 04, 2015, 01:58:04 PM »

Freeways are also called parkways in NYC.

And in Kentucky, but I can't recall anyone ever thinking that commercial vehicles are prohibited here the way they are on NYC's parkways.
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1995hoo

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #12 on: March 04, 2015, 02:14:30 PM »

*Recognizing you said in your first post you prefer to stick with "freeways" (which in New York are called "expressways")

Certainly not putting you in the same category of the deceased person I'm about to mention, but why is this nomenclature such an issue for some people?

....

I couldn't really care less and I view it as a regional thing, but I thought it was something the OP ought to know about simply for the sake of completeness. We also have some very hypertechnical people who might get upset if you directed them to a road called "Expressway" when they'd said "I want to stay on freeways." (I would submit that is unreasonable on the part of said hypertechnical people, but when you can just avoid the issue with a one-sentence clarification....)

I don't normally use either term myself. I grew up with the term "highway" referring to roads that have interchanges and no traffic lights. To me it's weird when my brother-in-law, who lives in Phoenix, uses "Highway ##" to refer to a road (e.g., "Highway 15" instead of "Route 15" or "US-15"). But I just view that as a regional thing too.



Freeways are also called parkways in NYC. Unless they're Mosholu.

I didn't include that reference because some of New York City's parkways are freeways, but others aren't, yet the truck restriction still applies. Since I was mentioning Ocean Parkway, I didn't want to lump them together since Ocean Parkway is more in the nature of an arterial boulevard.

But your comment does underscore that I probably should have said "usually called 'expressways.'"



Edited to add: BTW, one regionalism that may be worth knowing about for anyone driving in the New York City area for the first time is that a lot of local residents don't know road numbers. They'll stare blankly if you ask for directions to I-278 or I-495, for example, because they think of them as the SIE/Gowanus/BQE and LIE, respectively.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2015, 02:23:23 PM by 1995hoo »
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Alps

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2015, 07:09:44 PM »

The nice thing about I-278 is that you can visit all five boroughs, which can't be said for any other road.

hbelkins

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2015, 08:39:00 PM »

The nice thing about I-278 is that you can visit all five boroughs, which can't be said for any other road.

Which is what I did. Came down the Palisades from the Thruway, then used the required surface street connection in Fort Lee (which I made it through easily, with no delays) to the Turnpike. Then from there, I went south to I-278 and used it back northward to I-87, then across the Tappan Zee to Nyack.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2015, 08:48:08 PM »


The nice thing about I-278 is that you can visit all five boroughs, which can't be said for any other road.

Which is what I did. Came down the Palisades from the Thruway, then used the required surface street connection in Fort Lee (which I made it through easily, with no delays) to the Turnpike. Then from there, I went south to I-278 and used it back northward to I-87, then across the Tappan Zee to Nyack.

In Fort Lee: Hudson Terrace to Bridge Plaza, or the signed exit for the Turnpike down Fletcher Avenue?  I find the former faster.
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hbelkins

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2015, 09:01:06 PM »


The nice thing about I-278 is that you can visit all five boroughs, which can't be said for any other road.

Which is what I did. Came down the Palisades from the Thruway, then used the required surface street connection in Fort Lee (which I made it through easily, with no delays) to the Turnpike. Then from there, I went south to I-278 and used it back northward to I-87, then across the Tappan Zee to Nyack.

In Fort Lee: Hudson Terrace to Bridge Plaza, or the signed exit for the Turnpike down Fletcher Avenue?  I find the former faster.

I think Fletcher, but I'm not positive. I didn't take any pictures because it was dark by then.
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02 Park Ave

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2015, 09:11:54 PM »

The I-278 does not enter the Borough of Manhattan (New York County).
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NE2

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2015, 09:26:11 PM »

The I-278 does not enter the Borough of Manhattan (New York County).
It doesn't enter the island of Manhattan, but it enters the borough on Randalls and Wards Islands.
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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2015, 09:42:58 PM »

Thanks.  I stand corrected.
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hbelkins

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2015, 10:16:24 PM »

The I-278

Now, there's a California expression. :-)
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PurdueBill

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2015, 10:58:43 PM »

In California, would it be "the I-278" or just "the 278"?  :P

(Also, I believe that "sigalert" was used on at least one Bewitched episode despite the show's setting being decidedly not California.  When that rerun plays, I always notice that...)
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2015, 11:22:59 PM »

The I-278 does not enter the Borough of Manhattan (New York County).
It doesn't enter the island of Manhattan, but it enters the borough on Randalls and Wards Islands.

Manhattan encompasses at least these, Governor's Island, Roosevelt Island, Liberty Island, 20% of Ellis Island, and Marble Hill on the mainland. Could be more I'm forgetting.
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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2015, 02:11:21 AM »

When I was in a similar situation last summer, I took 95. The bridge was expensive but nice. I chose the time of my crossing carefully though to avoid too much traffic.

(Also, according to the OED, "fun" is a noun and an adjective.)

Well there's no doubt it's used as such, so it has to appear in dictionaries. But why does its superlative "-est" form raise red flags to our ears? Are there other one-syllable adjectives that can't be made superlative with "-est"?

This is now way off topic, but:

Back in the days of Old English, all adjectives formed their comparative and superlatives in “-er” and “-est.” But later, starting in the fourteenth century or so, the forms “more” and “most” appeared. Over time, they took over from the endings in the vast majority of cases, except for a number of short and commonly-used words, where they were retained. Because “fun” started life as a noun, it does not have this earlier form, and so by default it uses “more” and “most.” Other monosyllabic adjectives that take “more” and “most” tend to do so for other reasons, most often because they are rare enough that no one knows that there are “-er” and “-est” forms that can be used. A good example here would be “moot.”
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Re: Funnest way to drive through NYC
« Reply #24 on: March 05, 2015, 10:31:00 AM »

In California, would it be "the I-278" or just "the 278"?  :P

(Also, I believe that "sigalert" was used on at least one Bewitched episode despite the show's setting being decidedly not California.  When that rerun plays, I always notice that...)

It would be "The 278" in SoCal.  NorCal would say "278" or "I-278".
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