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City Council Approves Renaming Queensboro Bridge For Koch

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- City Council voted in favor of renaming the Queensboro Bridge in honor of former mayor Ed Koch on Wednesday.

WCBS 880's Rich Lamb with the Former Mayor


The Council's Parks Committee also voted for the proposal on Tuesday. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said in a statement that "Ed Koch was the bridge that brought New York City back from the brink of bankruptcy."

Koch, now 86, was the 105th mayor and helped repair the Queensboro and other bridges while in office from 1978 through 1989.

Several Queens lawmakers, however, were against the change and said the bridge should be named for the borough.

City Councilman Peter Vallone, Jr. said the Queensboro is part of the heritage and culture of Queens.

"Some of the people in Manhattan may call it the 59th Street Bridge, but the people in Queens, for the most part, get very upset when you don't call it the Queensboro Bridge," he said.

"I think Mayor Koch definitely deserves an honor like this and I have come up with a great compromise, which would be the municipal building directly across from city hall," Vallone told WCBS 880 reporter Paul Murnane. "This is a bridge that's named after a borough.... Our borough deserves the same respect that other boroughs would get. No one would ever even discuss renaming the Brooklyn Bridge."

Most New Yorkers agree. Of those surveyed in a Quinnipiac University poll, 64 percent oppose the re-naming.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed the name change in December. He said Koch's work in saving the city's bridges was symbolic of his overall legacy of turning the city around and building a better future.

Where do you stand on the renaming? Let us know below...

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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