When you think about it, calling it the George Washington Bridge is kind of odd.
First of all, New York City already had a Washington Bridge, a smaller span over the Harlem River connecting Washington Heights to the Bronx.
Also, before the bridge officially opened in 1931, it was always referred to as the Hudson River Bridge.
But Port Authority officials must not have been too keen on that. So they tossed around different options, even soliciting the public’s help.
Among the names considered were the Palisades Bridge, the Fort Lee Bridge, the Paradise Bridge, the Pride of the Nation Bridge, the Bi-State Bridge, the Cleveland Bridge (after the President, not the city), and the Rainbow Bridge, reported Michael Aaron Rockland in The George Washington Bridge: Poetry in Steel.
In the end, the Port Authority chose the GWB, which was the moniker most often proposed by schoolkids and women’s clubs, wrote Rockland.
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