After being closed for 45 years, the Old Croton Aqueduct’s High Bridge, now renovated, is open to the public. The bridge is part of New York City’s park system, administered by the city’s Department of Parks & Recreation. It is accessible to all, including visitors using wheelchairs, bikes, and strollers. Following are directions for getting onto the bridge from both the Bronx and Manhattan ends. At present the bridge is open from 7 am to 7 pm.
Entry to the bridge is at street level from Bronx Highbridge Park, located at W. 170th St. and University Ave. (Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.) and nearby streets. The Aqueduct lies beneath this small park.
By subway: The park is uphill from the 170th St. stop on the no. 4 line; the 170th St. stop on the B/D line is a little further away.
By car: The park is adjacent to 1381 Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd. (feature 22 on the Friends’ map of the Aqueduct in New York City).
Parking is difficult.
Entry to the bridge is partway down a hillside in Manhattan Highbridge Park.
- Stairway - At W. 172nd St. and Amsterdam Ave., follow the paved path past a playground to the 98-step stairway next to High Bridge Tower (closed for repairs). The bottom of the stairs is at the entry to the bridge. The 168th St. stations on the No. 1 and A/C subway lines are in convenient walking distance (about 10 minutes).
- Paved path - From W. 167th St. and Edgecombe Ave. (one block east of Amsterdam Ave.), follow the rampway down, cross the playground, and turn left onto the paved path to the bridge, about a half-mile (about a 10 min. walk). This path is on the line of the Aqueduct. For those not using wheeled means, a pleasant alternative is to take the same path from its beginning (see plaque set in paving) at W. 165th St. and Edgecombe Ave.; a sign at the sidewalk says Adventure Playground. Subway information: same as for stairway directions above.
NOTE: The north-south distances along Amsterdam and Edgecombe avenues, which form the edge of Highbridge Park near the High Bridge, are much shorter than in midtown. A walk between 173rd (Highbridge Recreation Center) and 165th streets, for example, takes only about 10 minutes.
- By Metro-North: Metro-North to Marble Hill, then walk a half-block to the 225th St. elevated station of the No. 1 line (southbound). Take subway to 168th street station, then walk east to High Bridge Park. For stairway, walk north to 172nd street entrance. For paved path, walk south to 167th street entrance.
- By car: Parking is difficult but not impossible, and there are several commercial parking lots. Finding street space may be easier on weekends than weekdays.