NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- New York City has decided to crack down on love – on the Brooklyn Bridge.
Sweethearts have long made the bridge a romantic spot – and left their mark by adorning padlocks along the span -- but as CBS 2's Steve Langford reported Wednesday, that's something the city isn't happy about.
Designer John Roebling might be amazed to see how his magnificent bridge has become a symbol of love, with the famous span decorated with locks left by lovers as a testament to their eternal devotion. Many couples secured the locks and then threw the keys into the East River, a grand romantic gesture not appreciated by the city, which said it is now removing the locks as fast as it can.
"They're taking them off? I'm sorry to hear that. I thought it was a nice little extra feature," said Steve Freifeld of East Meadow.
"Ah. I think they should leave it. I don't see why not. It's not hurting anybody," another person added.
The city's Department of Transportation said there are safety concerns, for lovers and drivers below. The city reported it has removed more than 5,600 love locks in less than a year.
"I can see why it would be an issue, but I can also see why it's something beautiful," said Gabriel Valentine of Crown Heights.
What's more, the city said as a national historic landmark, the bridge must not be damaged or altered.
In Paris, where all this seems to have started, the Pont des Arts has been loaded down with thousands of love locks, and while there are structural concerns about the weight, city hall in Paris so far has made no serious effort to stop the love, Langford reported.
The suspension of belief is not just a concern for authorities, as some who stroll the great bridge said they, too, worry about the love-struck.
"I don't like the idea of people climbing out there. Something's going to happen. It needs to be safe," one person said.
Perhaps they'll always have Paris.
The DOT said removing locks from the bridge can be costly and may require temporary closure of some traffic lanes.
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