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A stretch of road that nestles Manhattan on the western side, providing an express highway between the clogged arteries of 11th avenue and beyond, and the open expanse of the Hudson River. Begins at the George Washington Bridge (178th street) where it grows out of the off ramp and the Henry Hudson Parkway. It heads straight down, hugging the river, until it meets it’s eastern counterpart, the FDR drive at the World Trade Center. Traffic is express until 56th Street, where traffic lights begin.

The West Side Highway always seems like a good idea. Many times it isn’t. Sometimes it is. Cab drivers usually avoid it below 56th Street, preferring the regulated, flowing traffic lights of 10th Avenue over the chaotic bustle caused by the irregular lights on said highway below 59th. However, on most nights heading north, the traffic really begins at 79th Street if it’s not to bad, and clears up after the park on 125th for some reason I have never been able to elucidate.

The sights: Along your trip southward on the highway, a bike path paces you on the right. This newly made cycle path mirrors the highways full length, and it is better for seeing the sights you will pass. These sights include: New York City Department of Sanitation , The Intrepid, The Jacob K. Javits Center, a cool skate park, The Circle Line, Chelsea Piers, and countless other trivial moments of poetry. Also, you will have nice views of New Jersey hamlets like Edgewater, Hoboken, and Jersey City to your west.

Have fun, and remember Samsa’s second corollary: "No matter how fast you go, how much you weave, and how many cars you pass/cut off on the west side highway southbound, you will see all these cars again when stopped at the invariable red light that waits for you at 56th Street."


also known as:
Route 9a
The Henry Hudson Parkway

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