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On ramp to the Third Avenue bridge.
Port Morris is a neighborhood in the southwest Bronxmarker, New York Citymarker. It is a heavily industrial neighborhood. Its boundaries are the Major Deegan Expressway and Bruckner Expressway to the north, East 149th Street to the east, the East River to the southeast, the Bronx Killmarker south, and the Harlem River to the west. Bruckner Blvd, which runs under the Expressway, is the primary thoroughfare through Port Morris. Most of the neighborhood is within walking distance from the IRT #6 train's stops at Cypress Ave. and E. 149th St. Zip codes include 10454. The neighborhood is served by the NYPD's 40th Precinct.

Demographics

Though almost entirely industrial, Port Morris does contain two small residential pockets where about 1,500 people live. Most live in poverty. Over half the population receives public assistance (AFDC, Home Relief, Supplemental Security Income, and Medicaid). The vast majority of residents in the area are of Puerto Rican descent.

History

There is some evidence that a British paymaster ship went down off its coast, during the Revolutionary war with millions of dollars in gold aboard. No recovery was ever made.

The name comes from a deep water port established along the neighborhood's East River (Long Island Sound) waterfront by Gouverneur Morris in 1842. He built a two mile (3 km) railroad from Melrosemarker to his family's holdings on the waterfront. The area is dominated by factory and warehouse buildings constructed in the mid- to late 1800s, convenient to the railroad yards. Notable early businesses were the R. Hoe Co., as well as Cutler & Hammer Tool Works, and Mothers Friend Shirt Waist factory (1888) at Willow Ave. between E. 135th & E. 136th Sts. The area was the site of the Hell Gate generating plant of Con Edison, where George Metesky, the Mad Bomber who plagued NYC for decades was injured. While many of the early industrial buildings remain, much of the manufacturing has long since left the area. The most notable architectural/engineering feature of Port Morris is a series of concrete arches extending N from E. 132nd St., between Willow & Walnut Aves., which forms the N approach to the Hell Gate Bridge (1917).

A wave of arson during the 1970s destroyed or damaged many of the residential, commercial, and industrial structures in the area. In recent years industry has been making a come back to Port Morris. Many abandoned residential buildings are also being rehabilitated and designated low income housing.

The history of Port Morris, as with other neighborhoods, is sometimes confused by the lack of fixed official boundaries. Late in the 20th century the name was sometimes applied to the area to the west, into Mott Haven. Mott Haven by older definition lies to the west rather than north of Port Morris.

Prior to the incorporation of Greater NY, and before Bronx County was incorporated, this area was known as the North Side of New York County.

Urban renewal

The article which was previously located here was incorrect in so far as it was related to renewal in Mott Haven. A photo of an industrial building was situated in Mott Haven, at the intersection of Willis Ave. and E. 134th St. (east of the Willis Ave. bridge). That building had an interesting history as it was built as a hotel to service passengers travelling from Jersey City and points South & West, whose railroad cars were barged to the Harlem River yard, before being forwarded on toward Boston. When the car floats burned down, other routes were employed. The hotel lost its customers and was converted into a sheet metal factory. Early renewal.

North Side Board of Trade on Third Avenue; now a bank building


Social problems

The bank depicted again is in Mott Haven, as it is at the intersection of Third Ave. & E. 138th St. It was built in 1912 as the North Side Board of Trade, later becoming the North Side Savings Bank.

Violent crime is still a problem despite crime declines versus their peaks during the heroin and crack epidemics. Massive low income public housing developments line the north side side of the Major Deegan Expressway. The Mott Haven area to the west is notorious for its drug trade and violent crime. Port Morris is very industrial and desolate. The area adjacent to the Third Avenue bridge is in Mott Haven. Obviously, this is so because the former eponymous Mott Iron Works (1826) is located there.

The area is patrolled by the 40th Precinct located at 257 Alexander Avenue in the Mott Havenmarker section of the Bronx.

Transportation



Facts

  • Mott Haven is known as the "Gateway of the Bronx" because it is the southernmost portion of the borough.
  • Three homeless shelters are located in Port Morris.
  • Port Morris is considered part of the socioeconomic South Bronx.
  • In December 2007 the Albert Einstein College of Medicinemarker's Division of Substance Abuse opened the Wellness Center at Port Morris a center to provide substance abuse treatment and medical services to the community.

References

  1. 40th Precinct, NYPD.



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