How the Cross Bronx Expressway was Built and its Consequence

Student’s NameProfessor’s NameCourseDateHow the Cross Bronx Expressway was Built andits ConsequenceTheCross-Bronx Expressway was built through the New York City with the intentionof serving the large population therein and reducing congestions. Robert Mosesis the planner behind the highway and most of the other American cities’modernization (Sedensky). While in the mission of building roads and bridgesthrough the New York City, Robert ensured that some of the existing lands werepreserved for parks and other helpful tunnels through the town (Caro 850).Moses assured that most of the road is straight as it stretches through theborough and most of the curves that can be identified on the way are shallow.

Moreover,one of the miles possesses a puzzling location that cannot be expressed well onthe maps through the city. Although Robert Moses is known as an excellent urbanplanner as he managed to maneuver his way through the design and actualbuilding of the cross Bronx expressway, it is apparent that the constructionwas made in different ways and had various consequences.On theonset of the construction of the road, more people were displaced, and the moresignificant percentage was that of refugees who did not have much wealth.However, the affected individuals were provided with the necessities that theyneeded for their survival as the road could demolish their passage areas toother cities to work (Gubaydullin). Therefore, jobs were provided for the menwho did not have work downtown within their neighborhoods. Further, some of thepeople needed to travel city for their everyday tasks and good transportationwere provided.

Additionally, major shopping for mothers who were homemakers wasavailable in the neighborhood, and they could feed their children without muchhustle. As the construction of the road continued through the Southwesternborder, more requests on the availability of parks and Crotona Park was setapart. The parks that were set apart replaced playgrounds that would providechildren with a place to play and have fun together (Ouroussoff). Additionally,the parks provided recreation for both young adults and children. Moreover,Moses built a swimming pool that was referred to as the Indian Lake, which alsoenhanced recreational activities in the neighborhood.Further,the highway passed through Tremont where schooling was considered a valuableexercise.

Moses ensured not to interfere with the schools, and all were keptclose enough for the children to walk to and from home (Caro 853). However, most of the apartmentsin East Tremont were traditional, and Moses did not see it a big dealdemolishing them. Furthermore, he emphasized that the lack of elevators in theapartments made them resemble slums. However, the people in the neighborhoodloved the houses because their low water pressure was equivalent to moremoderate amounts of rent. With time, East Tremont could act as a home for thecity’s newest immigrants, and this made it a stage for fast urbanization withinthe construction period of the road. Further, Robert Moses sent letters to thepeople of East Tremont notifying them of the passage of the highway throughtheir town (Caro 858). By then, an influx of refugees existed who were mostlyNegroes into the place, as they believed it had the cheapest of houses thatthey could afford. He was the city construction coordinator as indicated in theletters and the people were given an ultimatum of ninety days to vacate theplace, although there had been no warnings and indications of the information(Rayman).

However, the finances to build the road had not yet been released bythe time of delivery of the letters. Therefore, more time would be required tomake the way contrary to the three months periods indicated on the note.Moreover,the letter expressed that a section of the highway had already been completedand that the relocation services were done in an orderly way. However, contraryto the information, the two and a half miles of the express highway that hadcome to completion that had created a scene of desolation and destruction. Thesites had turned into hills of people as there were no tenants in thesurrounding. The eviction and displacement of people from their apartments arethe most significant adverse effect on the inhabitants of the areas throughwhich the road passed. According to Gubaydullin, many people were displaced andmoved to temporary shelters with their families as they awaited other phases ofeviction.

In sucha way, the economy of New York City faced challenges as the number of peoplewho contributed to its GDP was jobless and homeless, although some of them hadno clear routes to use in their workplace. Despite the formation of a TenantRelocation Bureau that was charged with the responsibility of findingcomparable living quarters with average conditions that could accommodatepeople of the economic middle and low cases, there were no beneficial actionswitnessed (Rayman). The evicted people would continue to suffer for anirregular period as some of them continued to hold on to their old homes withthe hope that things would get better and that they would be spared. In mostcases, the city had tens of thousands of people who were waiting to beallocated the city’s public homes, which were slightly cheaper than the otherhouses (Powell).

Additionally, the displaced persons faced threats that thecompensation fee that had been offered for moving expenses would be lowered ifthey declined the already provided amounts.Moreover,there was hope for the people of East Tremont where the second section of thehighway was to pass when Flanagan, a close ally of Moses, reasoned with themand concluded that there could have been a better route through the Park, whichwould warrant that no individuals would face displacement (Caro 863). Most ofthe apartments would be saved if the alternate route would be accepted for usein the road construction. A battle ensued between the city dwellers and theauthorities to either have an alternative way or at least increase the amountof compensation to the displaced people. It was in this cause that the localsset to seek engineers who would be willing to defy Moses’ orders as they drew adetailed map of the alternative route and proving its feasibility from theengineers’ point of view (Caro 868).

The media was not willing to publicize thewoes of the people as they sought help. Therefore, the details of the lossesthat would be incurred by New York were omitted from the newspapers as theMoses and his engineers were stubborn to change their construction routes.Lilian Edelstein helped fight for the people’s rights to housing, but it waschallenging to convince various individuals who believed that fighting the cityhall officials would never be fruitful.Some ofthe challenges that would hinder the success of Robert Moses’ work in New Yorkwere both political and economic. In such a way, the Bronx President supportedhis people that the highway had an alternative route, even though the case wastaken to the law offices (Sarachan). However, Moses believed that the passageof the road in the proposed alternative areas would pose speed-limitingchallenges, which will not solve the existing problems on the streets. Further,Moses made Lyons agree with him that the only possible road was his version andthreatened to stop the ongoing construction in Lyons if he could be defeated inthis case (Caro 872). The effects of the Bronx highway are still felt in theNew York City as motorists have to slow down when using the road to avoidaccidents.

Furthermore, the Lincoln Tunnel, which is along the Bronx highway,is among the most congested routes during rush hours. Hence, it slows downtraffic movements, which in return causes motorists a loss of many hours on theroad annually. With time, most of the building in the Bronx had been raced downby people who then sought compensation from insurance companies so the moneycould help them settle in their new homes.

With the continued trick of settinghouses ablaze, insurers uncovered the motives behind it and stopped theprovision of insurance policies. Hence, the city blocks were abandoned andbecame home to gangs that would then rob people for survival. A significanteffect of the relocation of the locals was an increased crime rate in the cityas many jobs had also been lost.

Overall,the construction of the Bronx express highway is associated with both advantagesand challenges just like any other projects. Hence, many people were displaced,and the government could not refund them substantially (Gubaydullin). As aresult, the number of homeless individuals and refugees increased in the NewYork, especially East Tormento (Rayman).

Additionally, the economy of theentire city was paralyzed as many people lost jobs while others were not in aposition to commute to their workplaces as some roads were demolished to buildthe highway. However, the construction also created some jobs that were takenup by local engineers who helped in developing the way to completion. Despitethe political and economic challenges, the highway was built successfully as itstill serves as the primary transportation means in the New York City. WorksCitedCaro, Robert A. The Power Broker Robert Moses and the Fallof New York.

Vintage Books, 1975.Gubaydullin, Marat. “Robert Moses and the Cross-Bronx Expressway.” Baruch.26 Sept. 2013. https://blogs.

baruch.cuny.edu/his3460fall2013/?p=217.

Accessed 20 Dec. 2017.Ouroussoff, Nicolai. “Complex, Contradictory Robert Moses.” NewYork Times. 2 Feb.

2007. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/02/arts/design/02mose.

html.Accessed 20 Dec. 2017.

Powell, Michael. “A Tale of Two Cities.” New York Times.6 May 2007. http://www.nytimes.

com/2007/05/06/nyregion/thecity/06hist.html. Accessed 20 Dec. 2017.Rayman, Graham. “Cross Bronx Expressway Named Most Congested CityRoadway In U.S.” NY Daily News.

20 Feb. 2017. http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/cross-bronx-expressway-named-congested-city-roadway-u-s-article-1.2977466.

Accessed 20 Dec. 2017.Sarachan, Sydney. “The Legacy of Robert Moses.” PBS.17 Jan. 2013.

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/need-to-know/environment/the-legacy-of-robert-moses/16018/.

Accessed 20 Dec. 2017.Sedensky, Matt. “Neighborhood Report: Bronx Up Close; DecadesLater, Doing the Cross Bronx Expressway Right.” New York Times.

1Oct. 2001. http://www.nytimes.com/2001/10/07/nyregion/neighborhood-report-bronx-up-close-decades-later-doing-cross-bronx-expressway.

html. Accessed 20 Dec. 2017. 

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