northern-meadowbrook-2004 Robert Moses is widely recognized as one of the most powerful and controversial figures in the history of New York. Maybe someone should have tweeted that to King Bloomberg before he compared himself to the legendary “master builder”? While it’s true that Moses was responsible for completing many of the largest public works projects ever devised, he was also defined by an uncanny ability to steamroll anyone who opposed him, isolating the poor, and facilitating the middle class’ white flight to Long Island. In addition to carving up the South Bronx with unsightly expressways, the scenic parkways he built in the suburbs were equally offensive. If you’ve ever traveled out east and wondered why the bridges are so low, well there’s a perfectly good reason: they kept out buses.

The ones that city folk would have had to hop on to enjoy Jones Beach and the other less crowded paradises dotting the South Shore back during Moses’ heyday. But the more affluent, car-driving residents had no problem, pleasurably cruising the smooth parkways and sailing under the vertically challenged overpasses. |NewYorker|