This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.
Find the past “On This Day in History” here.
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June 29 is the 180th day of the year (181st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 185 days remaining until the end of the year.
The Outerbridge Crossing is a cantilever bridge which spans the Arthur Kill. The “Outerbridge”, as it is commonly known, connects Perth Amboy, New Jersey, with the New York City borough of Staten Island and carries NY-440 and NJ-440, each road ending at the respective state border.
The bridge was named for Eugenius Harvey Outerbridge (sometimes pronounced “ooterbridge”) the first chairman of the then-Port of New York Authority and a resident of Staten Island. Rather than call it the “Outerbridge Bridge” the span was labeled a “crossing”, but many New Yorkers and others mistakenly assume the name comes from the fact that it is the most remote bridge in New York City and the southernmost crossing in New York state.
It is a steel cantilever construction, designed by John Alexander Low Waddell and built under the auspices of the Port of New York Authority, now the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which currently operates it.
It opened simultaneously with the Goethals Bridge on June 29, 1928. Both spans have similar designs. Neither bridge saw high traffic counts until the opening of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in 1964. Traffic counts on both bridges were also depressed due to the effects of the Great Depression and World War II.
The Outerbridge Crossing carried 32,438,000 vehicles (both directions) in 2006, or approximately 90,000 each day. Tolls are collected in the eastbound direction only. In early 2009, the cash toll was $8 for passenger vehicles. Users of E-ZPass pay a toll of $6 during off-peak hours (outside of 6-9 am and 4-7 pm).
In 2003, the Port Authority raised the speed limit for the three inner E-ZPass lanes at the toll plaza from 15 mph to 25 mph, separating these lanes from the rest of the eight-lane toll plaza by a barrier. Two years later, the tollbooths adjacent to the 25 mph E-ZPass lanes were removed and overhead gantries were installed with electronic tag readers to permit E-ZPass vehicles to travel at 45 mph in special high-speed lanes. Motorists using the high-speed E-ZPass lanes cannot use the Page Avenue exit, which is located immediately after the toll plaza.
In recent years, the bridge has undergone numerous repair jobs as a result of the high volume of traffic that crosses the bridge each day.
The Goethals Bridge connects Elizabeth, New Jersey to Staten Island (New York City), near the Howland Hook Marine Terminal, Staten Island, New York over the Arthur Kill. Operated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the span was one of the first structures built by the authority. On the New Jersey side it is located 2 exits south of the terminus for the New Jersey Turnpike-Newark Bay Extension. The primary use for this bridge is a connection for New York City to Newark Airport. The bridge has been grandfathered into Interstate 278, and named for Major General George Washington Goethals, who supervised construction of the Panama Canal and was the first consulting engineer of the Port Authority.
A steel truss cantilever design by John Alexander Low Waddell ], who also designed the [Outerbridge Crossing. The bridge is 672 ft (205 m) long central span, 7,109 feet (2,168 m) long in total, 62 feet (19 m) wide, has a clearance of 135 feet (41.1 m) and has four lanes for traffic. The Port Authority had $3 million of state money and raised $14 million in bonds to build the Goethals Bridge and the Outerbridge Crossing; the Goethals bridge construction began on September 1, 1925 and cost $7.2 million. It and the Outerbridge Crossing opened on June 29, 1928. The Goethals Bridge replaced three ferries and is the immediate neighbor of the Arthur Kill Rail Bridge. Its unusual mid-span height was a requirement of the New Jersey ports.
Connecting onto the New Jersey Turnpike, it is one of the main routes for traffic between there and Brooklyn via the Staten Island Expressway and the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. Until the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was completed in 1964 the Goethals Bridge never turned a profit. The same happened to the Outerbridge Crossing. The total traffic in 2002 was 15.68 million vehicles.
226 – Cao Pi dies after an illness; his son Cao Rui succeeds him as emperor of the Kingdom of Wei.
1149 – Raymond of Poitiers is defeated and killed at the Battle of Inab by Nur ad-Din Zangi.
1194 – Sverre is crowned King of Norway.
1444 – Skanderbeg defeats an Ottoman invasion force at Torvioll.
1534 – Jacques Cartier is the first European to reach Prince Edward Island.
1613 – The Globe Theatre in London, England burns to the ground.
1644 – Charles I of England defeats a Parliamentarian detachment at the Battle of Cropredy Bridge, the last battle won by an English King on English soil.
1659 – At the Battle of Konotop the Ukrainian armies of Ivan Vyhovsky defeat the Russians led by Prince Trubetskoy.
1786 – Alexander Macdonell and over five hundred Roman Catholic highlanders leave Scotland to settle in Glengarry County, Ontario.
1807 – Russo-Turkish War: Admiral Dmitry Senyavin destroys the Ottoman fleet in the Battle of Athos.
1850 – Autocephaly officially granted by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople to the Church of Greece.
1864 – Ninety-nine people are killed in Canada’s worst railway disaster near St-Hilaire, Quebec.
1874 – Greek politician Charilaos Trikoupis publishes a manifesto in the Athens daily Kairoi entitled “Who’s to Blame?” in which he lays out his complaints against King George. He is elected Prime Minister of Greece the next year.
1880 – France annexes Tahiti.
1889 – Hyde Park and several other Illinois townships vote to be annexed by Chicago, forming the largest United States city in area and second largest in population.
1895 – Doukhobors burn their weapons as a protest against conscription by the Tsarist Russian government.
1914 – Jina Guseva attempts to assassinate Grigori Rasputin at his home town in Siberia.
1916 – The Irish Nationalist and British diplomat Sir Roger Casement is sentenced to death for his part in the Easter Rising.
1922 – France grants 1 km2 at Vimy Ridge “freely, and for all time, to the Government of Canada, the free use of the land exempt from all taxes”.
1926 – Arthur Meighen returns to office as Prime Minister of Canada.
1927 – First test of Wallace Turnbull’s controllable pitch propeller.
1928 – The Outerbridge Crossing and Goethals Bridge in Staten Island, New York are both opened.
1945 – Carpathian Ruthenia is annexed by the Soviet Union.
1950 – In one of the greatest upsets in sports history, the United States defeats England during the 1950 FIFA World Cup.
1956 – The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 is signed, officially creating the United States Interstate Highway System.
1972 – The U.S. Supreme Court rules in the case Furman v. Georgia that arbitrary and inconsistent imposition of the death penalty violates the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments, and constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.
1974 – Isabel Peron is sworn in as the first female President of Argentina. Her husband, President Juan Peron, had delegated responsibility due to weak health and died two days later.
1974 – Mikhail Baryshnikov defects from the Soviet Union to Canada while on tour with Bolshoi Ballet.
1976 – The Seychelles become independent from the United Kingdom.
1995 – Space Shuttle program: STS-71 Mission (Atlantis) docks with the Russian space station Mir for the first time.
1995 – The Sampoong Department Store collapses in the Seocho-gu district of Seoul, South Korea, killing 501 and injuring 937.
2002 – Naval clashes between South Korea and North Korea lead to the death of six South Korean sailors and sinking of a North Korean vessel.
2006 – Hamdan v. Rumsfeld: The U.S. Supreme Court rules that President George W. Bush’s plan to try Guantanamo Bay detainees in military tribunals violates U.S. and international law.
2007 – Apple Inc. releases their first mobile phone, the iPhone.
2007 – Two car bombs are found at Piccadilly Circus, in the heart of London.
2012 – A derecho strikes the eastern United States, leaving at least 22 people dead and millions without power.
2014 – The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant self-declared its caliphate in Syria and northern Iraq.
* Christian Feast Day:
* Cassius of Narni
* Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, and its related observances:
* Haro Wine Festival (Haro, La Rioja)
* l-Imnarja (Malta)
* June 29 (Eastern Orthodox liturgics)
* Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Seychelles from United Kingdom in 1976.
* Veterans Day (Netherlands)