Curving gracefully over the narrow neck of the Pond at 59th Street, Gapstow is one of the iconic bridges of Central Park. Design aficionados might notice a striking resemblance to the Ponte di San Francesco in San Remo, Italy.
The bridge offers postcard views of the surrounding cityscape. Facing south, you can see the famed Plaza Hotel and distinctive New York skyscrapers rising from above the Park’s trees. Look southward in the winter and you’ll see Wollman Rink’s twirling skaters; in the warmer months you’ll see the colorful amusements of Victorian Gardens.
Originally designed by Jacob Wrey Mould in 1874, the then-wooden bridge with cast-iron railings suffered great wear over 20 years. It was replaced with the current stone structure in 1896, designed by Howard & Caudwell. Built of Manhattan schist, Gapstow stand 12 feet high, spans 44 feet of water, and stretches 76 feet in its full length.