The Overpass | Robert Moses | Failed Architecture


Dozens of students hurt when bus roof sheared off in overpass crash

The impact of the bus hitting the overpass was so forceful, state police and others who saw the damage say they doubt the driver knew what was coming.

“I don’t think he had any awareness because if you look at the damage, it’s a high impact strike,” Candelaria said. “He made it all the way through.”

Multiple ambulances and firetrucks responded to the scene.

The 38 students from various Long Island high schools, along with five chaperones, had just returned from John F. Kennedy International Airport and were heading to a shopping mall to meet up with parents, police said.

Police said the driver was being evaluated and did not seem to be familiar with commercial vehicle restrictions on the parkway.

The minimum clearance on the parkway is 7 feet, 10 inches and accidents involving vehicles striking overpasses is not uncommon on the parkway.  In 2017, there were reports that an electronic alarm system would be installed on the parkway to warn drivers of vehicles too high for the overpass.

Hostile Architecture? Yes, the Overpass! And it was for a reason – to restrict buses and poor people from moving to Long Island, New York.

…hostile architecture is purposely designed to appear unremarkable, often concealed behind mundane or apparently aesthetic aspects of the urban landscape.

Skateboarding, for example, is discouraged with ‘pig-ears’ placed on objects which could be used for grinding, throwing any potential mounts off balance, while flat, sloped surfaces, used by skaters as ramps, are segmented and depressed in areas, making cruising impossible. Although hostile architecture has been criticized for unfairly discriminating against skateboarders, and by extension teenagers, its most controversial target is undoubtedly the homeless.

… hostile architecture is claimed to displace behaviour rather than prohibit it, forcing targeted communities to other areas of the city.  Moreover, homelessness and skateboarding are not inherently illegal, and local governments have been accused of expelling already underrepresented individuals.

Unlike (racist) Robert Moses’ civil works these structures have not been allowed disappear into the landscape, with the growing scholarship on hostile architecture resolutely documenting their effects on public space.

Perhaps as recourse authorities have begun openly admitting their use of hostile architecture.

Source: Robert Moses, Pig-Ears and the Camden Bench: How Architectural Hostility Became Transparent — Failed Architecture

2 Replies to “The Overpass | Robert Moses | Failed Architecture”

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