Monday, January 09, 2017

Sad Sight: Removal Of Long Island College Hospital's Footbridge On Amity Street

(photo credit: Elizabeth Kenney)

Here is a sad moment in time captured by friend and Carroll Gardener Elizabeth Kenney yesterday.
The photo shows the footbridge that spanned over Amity Street between Henry and Hicks Street, combining two of Long Island College Hospital's two beautiful old brick buildings being taken down.
Many here in South Brooklyn will remember using this bridge when staying at the hospital, visiting a patient or just keeping an appointment with a doctor.
The dismantling is all part of the demolition of Long Island Hospital, a once proud institution that served the community for over 150 years. During a short affiliation that started in 2011, the hospital was shamelessly plundered by Continuum Health Partners. It was further undermined when it became part of SUNY Downstate's University Hospital of Brooklyn, which sold some of its assets and then closed the facility altogether. The remaining complex was purchased by Fortis Property Groups, which is currently dismantling many of the buildings so that new high-rise condos can be built in their place.

Here is a photo of the bridge between the two buildings taken by Michael D. D. White of Noticing New York in 2013.
(photo credit: Michael D. D. White of Noticing New York)

How incredibly depressing is it to see the hospital being dismantled?


Anonymous said...

No more depressing than Johnny's closing, or any of the bakeries, or Matty and Joe no longer being around.

It's a building. Making way for another building, that will house families that will have children that will grow up in a neighborhood, some of whom may stay for multiple generations. Sure, the neighborhood will be slightly different from when I grew up here, and it might be different from where ever it is you are from, but a neighborhood is more than its buildings, and this neighborhood, like all others, is constantly evolving. This is just another minor step in evolution. If that depresses you...I don't know what to tell you.

Katia said...

And the time will come when we lack hospital beds to treat all the extra residents moving into these new residential buildings and we will remember that we once had a hospital that served the community and that we allowed it to be run to the ground by interests that did not serve local residents, but only themselves.
What makes a neighborhood is not only residential buildings but schools, libraries, medical facilities and so much more.

Anonymous said...

I understand the wistfulness toward losing the hospital, but the bridge itself was an architectural eyesore ruining one-hundred-and-some-year old French Renaissance-style facade.

On the other hand, I laugh at the irony of "No Towers in Cobble Hill" posters in windows of newly built 5,000-square-foot single-family mansions or those 6+ unit brownstones that have been converted back to single family. New apartments are being built to replace housing that has disappeared, replacing a hospital these new 5,000 sq. ft. homeowners never set foot in.

Anonymous said...


You hit the nail on the head. The hospital was plundered. The Othmers left the hospital $130 million in 1999. Prudently invested and used the hospital should have been well endowed to continue to provide health care in the area. Brooklyn is not overbedded while Manhattan is. It's a crying shame that Continuum took all the Othmers money and left us with a hulking shell and a mismanaged asset. Once it became part of SUNY the place was doomed.

I 100% disagree with the first poster. This is not about accepting change. I've lived in Carroll Gardens for all of my 55 years, and my parents were born in the neighborhood as well. In fact, my family has lived in Carroll Gardens for over 100 years. Change is inevitable and the neighborhood has been changing for as long as I can remember. Change is not inherently bad--even if we sometimes pine for the way things used to be.

The closing of LICH was nothing more than a horrible example of corporate greed and its impact on an unsuspecting community that was unable to protect a treasured community asset

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

It's all about the greed that is's sad that all they want are Condos so they can see a view..the "Town House" that was built on President St that is being sold for a whopping 9 million dollars that has been on the market for a year. What is that about? I's still empty. Schools are over crowded there is no parking no "normal grocery" to shop in and NO HOSPITAL but plenty of over priced condos. Horrible what has been alowed to happen to our neighborhood.

Katia said...

Well said, Anon 10:09.

Anonymous said...

I grew up in Brooklyn, went to high school in Brooklyn, returned after college and spent 25 years in the Heights. I left in 1998 and never want to return. It is not the borough I loved and cherished. It is a cold, soulless place to me. I know, I know, you can't go home again. Enjoy your overpriced condo's and $100 parking tickets. There's more to life.

amy said...

Not just a building. Lives were saved there, history was made there, many of the nations medical firsts came from there. It's mission always was to serve the poor, but it was closed because that was not profitable. Its closure has left a medical desert in Redhook & long waits & overcrowding in Brooklyns other hospitals.

Sean said...

Agree that the loss of the hospital robs the neighborhood of a badly needed resource. Also agree that the bridge was an eyesore, and am not directly sad to see the bridge itself disappear.

Anonymous said...

The bridge was disgusting. Good riddance.