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Central Park: The Grand Vision

Greyshot Arch
Pine Bank Arch
Dalehead Arch
Riftstone Arch
Eaglevale Bridge
Balcony Bridge
Bank Rock Bridge
Ramble Arch
Winterdale Arch
Dipway Arch
Driprock Arch
Playmates Arch
Gapstow Bridge
Inscope Arch
Green Gap Arch
Denesmouth Arch
Willowdell Arch
The Terrace Bridge
Bow Bridge
Trefoil Arch
Glade Arch
Greywacke Arch
Southeast Reservoir Bridge
Reservoir Bridge Southwest
Claremont Arch
Gothic Bridge
Springbanks Arch
Glen Span
Huddlestone Arch
Mountcliff Arch


Spur Rock Arch Marble Arch Outset Arch


Bridges of Central Park
Ornamental Bridges and Archways


Glade Arch, near Fifth Avenue and 79th Street, is among the first of Calvert Vaux's designs. Like Denesmouth, further south, the low elliptical span was constructed with a light-colored New Brunswick sandstone. It measures 29 feet 6 inches across and is 10 feet high. The underpassage is 50 feet 7 inches, and the balustrade extends for 95 feet.

Deterioration took its toll over the years. The stonework lost its subtle tones. Trees budged the structure, coping fell, and the balustrade fractured. In 1980, a snowplow clearing the roadway destroyed a large section of the northern balustrade. In 1981, the bridge was renovated, the stone washed, the coping reset and missing parts of the balustrade replaced. This was made possible by the joint effort of the Central Park Community Fund and Greensward Foundation, with a generous grant from Bankers Trust Company.

All original stone posts and bases were repaired and reused along with thirty new balusters of reinforced cast stone replicating the originals. Graffiti was removed from the surface of the structure and the interior vault of red Philadelphia brick. Overgrown landscape in the area was cleared to make the restored structure more visible and attractive. In 1988, deteriorated brick in the vault was replaced by the Central Park Conservancy.

Novel touches are seen in the stonework. The revetment of the abutments is set in a diamond pattern with the surface in tooled ashlar. The device of a sunken quatrefoil is found in each abutment. The rectangular posts of the balustrade are topped by a cluster of horizontal rods.

Original study for bridge over footpath. Watercolor and black ink. April 15, 1859. Municipal Archives.

Longitudinal sections. Original drawing. 1859. Municipal Archives.

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