Since the new pedestrian bridge has opened, every day on my way home from work I look over and see a lot of people walking across it. I’ve seen pictures plastered all across social media. It’s been the talk of Amsterdam. So my parents and I took a drive down to check it out and when my foot stepped onto the bridge I had no idea that I would have a new outlook on our city as I walked off.
We went down at around sunset, the most beautiful time of the day in my opinion, immediately I noticed the many people walking on and off of the bridge. I stopped to take a picture toward the middle. The sunset beautifully reflected in the calm waters of the Mohawk River. I not a professional photographer but photography is one of my favorite hobbies. I’ve been longing for a nice spot to capture beautiful photos of skies or water and now I have it.
What was meant to be a quick walk just to check it out – turned out to be a social night out. We ran into so many people that we knew. One person said it perfectly, “This is great – it’s become a place we can see people other than in the grocery store.” Another person mentioned how they’ve come down every night to walk the bridge because it’s a safe place to get exercise and see friends without walking the streets. I couldn’t agree more. As a runner, I can’t wait to run a new route over on the south side to include the bridge.
Walking toward the end of the bridge we decided to continue on to the Riverlink Park. I need to mention that I’ve probably been down to the park a total of less than 10 times, but, that’s going to now change. As we walked deeper into the park I turned around to notice the view of the bridge. Absolutely incredible. Then, we stopped at the 9/11 Memorial, where a beam from the North Tower of the World Trade Center stands.
Before making our trek back toward the bridge I stopped to look around. I thought to myself, “wow it is so peaceful and beautiful down here, why haven’t I come here more often?”
I remember back when I was a senior in high school and I had to attend government meetings as a requirement for class. One of those meetings was about the pedestrian bridge that was going to be built. For years I never understood why it was going to be built. I listened to the many skeptics talk about it and I even wondered myself who would even use it.
Now, I can’t wait to go back down and check it out – whether I bring a book and sit at a bench, take a walk with family or friends, include it in my running route, or just go down to enjoy a night on our new beautiful bridge, I can bet this will be one of my new favorite spots.
Personally I think this is going to be incredible for our community. Every person we ran into on the bridge couldn’t stop talking about how much they loved it. Every person on that bridge was smiling.
Not only will this be a chance for people to interact with those they don’t see often or a place to get exercise, but there are endless opportunities our new pedestrian bridge brings. How about to take an evening stroll after eating dinner at one of our restaurants on the southside? I can also see it as a place teachers could bring their students for a quick field trip to see the 9/11 Memorial, to teach them about the history of the Mohawk River, or, for a nice afternoon out! It would also be a great place for wedding or family pictures, a new venue for a vendor fair, etc.
So, if you haven’t gone down to check it out yet I encourage all of our Amsterdam residents to do so. It’s beautiful, peaceful, social, and definitely just the start of what’s to come for our community!