Bronx: Einstein/Jacoby Medical Center – Williamsbridge Road – Morris Park Zig-Zag for a Low Traffic, Well-lit Night Run

Here is another short run adjacent to the Einstein/Jacoby Medical Center. It is especially useful for those who have had a long day and are forced to run after dark. Basically, it is a zig-zag pattern in the neighborhood west of the Einstein/Jacoby campus that is bound to the north by Pelham Parkway South and to the south by Morris Park Ave. The western boundary is Williamsbridge Road and Eastchester Road is on the eastern side of the route.

This neighborhood is very safe and well-lit. To give you an idea of what to expect from the neighborhood, it is filled with single-family homes valued in the $500,000 to million dollar range. After rush hour, the streets are pretty quiet and your only real concern about running these streets is cross-traffic on the cross streets (Lydig, Neill, and Rheinlander Aves.).

While the streets on this route function almost like a private running route late at night, it is always advisable to run with night lights and reflectors. To give you an idea of what might be appropriate, we can look at what the Ragnar Relays always require for its night runners. They require at least three pieces of safety gear for night runs: headlamps, reflective vest/harness, and a tail light. (Great, inexpensive gear can be had from Amazon – especially for those of you who are Prime members see these links for options – headlamps | reflective vests/harness | tail light). Of course, all three of these items may be considered overkill for most, but I always like to run with at least a vest/harness and a tail light at night while running against traffic. But that’s just me. To each their own!

Screenshot 2017-08-22 23.56.24

Route Description:

(Run 8/14/17) This route starts outside the driveway of 1935 Eastchester Road near the intersection of Stillwell Ave. and Eastchester Road.

Head south to Morris Park Ave. and turn right. Follow Morris Park Ave. to Williambridge Road and make a right.

In about a half mile, you will reach Pelham Parkway South where you will turn right. At the end of the block you’ll make your first zig – a right on Yates Ave. What’s nice about this street and the one to the east of it is that there is a bike line painted into the road that you can run in or you can also opt to run on the sidewalk.

Head back down to Morris Park Ave. and zag to the left and left again on Hering Ave. On a side note, if you end up registering to vote in the Bronx, you’ll pass your polling station on the corner of Hering Ave. and Neill Ave. – P.S. 108. But for now, you’ll really want to continue up Hering until you hit Pelham Parkway South to zig to the right and come back down Tenbroeck Ave.

Take Tenbroeck Ave. back to Morris Park Ave. and zag to the left and left again onto Seminole Ave. Follow Seminole Ave. to Neill Ave., make a right and follow the road back to Pelham Parkway South.

Make a right on Pelham Parkway South and continue about a quarter mile to Eastchester Road and make a right. Follow Eastchester Road back to the starting point for a 3.65 mile run.

Make it a 5-miler! If you want to run further, tack on a full loop of the Einstein/Jacoby campus for another 1.35 miles.

From the starting point, continue south to Morris Park Ave. and make a right.

After about a quarter mile, make a right on Seminole Ave. and follow it around the campus to Pelham Parkway South and make another right.

Head to Eastchester Road and make a right and continue back to the starting point at the 1935 Eastchester Road driveway.

 

Mileage:

3.65 miles for the zig-zag route or 5 miles if you tack on the full Einstein/Jacoby Medical Center loop.

Elevation: 

Nothing too crazy. Varies from 22 to 89 feet with gradual inclines.

Hill Ratio:

0 hills for a ratio of 0.00.

CPMR: 

0.2. I had the one guy standing in front of his house this evening catching a smoke. Otherwise, I am sure future runs will bring this number down to zero.

%RNPS:

0.00. None of this course is within a half mile of a major freeway but it just barely qualifies on the Eastchester Road side.

Safe after dark?

Safe during the day and safe at night in terms of both traffic and crime.

Just don’t try to include Stillwell Ave. between Eastchester Road and Pelham Parkway South in this route to bring it to a full 4 miler. Curiously, the crime and traffic safety issues on this small pocket of street skyrocket compared to the rest of the neighborhood. Just ask the student who was propositioned by the man in the windowless van (160627_CampusAlert) or read up on the recent criminal activity on this street. Yes, that’s right, just a block from the 49th precinct!

Crowd Scene?

Not very crowded inside the neighborhood. A little bit of traffic on Williamsbridge Road as you run through the Williamsbridge business district.

Running Surface:

Sidewalk and asphalt.

Changing Station?

There is a Starbucks on the corner of Morris Park Ave. and Eastchester Road with serviceable bathrooms.

Points of Interest:

You’ll run past some interesting houses and through the length of the Williamsbridge business district where you might find you very next takeout meal experience.

Along with getting a round-trip view of the campus, you get a mini-tour of the fine establishments and institutions along Eastchester Road including the NYPD 49th Precinct, Apple Grocery, Dolphin Fitness, GiGi’s Pizza, Denigris Dominick (tombstones), Enterprise Rent-a-car, Good to Go, Tana Thai, Dunkin Donuts, and Starbucks.

Good for Groups:

Narrow sidewalks make this ideal for 2 up to 4 runners.

Safe from Cars:

Most of this route intersects with low traffic roads. You don’t cross any major roads but you do cross a few low-volume roads.

One caveat as you cross the four entrances to the Einstein/Jacoby Medical Center campus – watch out at the stop sign crossings around the Jacoby campus. Most drivers are not used to watching for runners crossing and will treat the stop signs as suggestions as they speed through their turns.

Prospects for a Break-Free Run: 

Very good. You are crossing mostly lightly used intersections during this run and you will only probably need to stop sporadically.

Friends Run Into During Run:

0

Is there a route you’ve always wanted to run, but wanted someone else to run it first in case of hidden axe murderers or marauding street cat gangs? Let me know in the comments and I’ll try to cover it! Or is there any other route criteria you’d like me to cover? If so, drop me a comment below.

© 2017 Danilo Torres. All rights reserved.

Advertisements

Manhattan: Downtown to the Upper East Side via Lafayette/Park Ave

Today’s post is sponsored by the letters “E” and “Z”. That is, today’s route prevents you from running any faster than an E-Z run pace. This is the most scenic north-south route in Manhattan in my opinion. Sure views of the river are great, but I think you see all kinds of Manhattan on this run. Including the people. Oh, the people. Originally, I wanted to run this route because I was feeling kinda tired and I knew there would be some traffic and ample opportunities for rest stops, but as they say, be careful what you wish for…

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 10.30.07 PM

Click on map to enlarge.

Route Description:

(Run 4/17/15) This route starts again at the World Trade PATH station and heads east to City Hall, then north (left) on Lafayette.

Lafayette heads north and merges into Park Ave around 9th St.

You’ll need to make a hitch around Grand Central Terminal, but you can rejoin Park Ave on 45th St via the pedestrian tunnel.

Continue up Park Ave to 86th for a 6 mile run or you can adjust to a 5 mile run by stopping at around 64th; stop around Grand Central Terminal (not “Station”) for a 4 miler.

The route is almost verbatim the same route used during the annual Summer Streets event held every August. Basically, the city closes down Park Ave/Lafayette to automobile traffic for three Saturday mornings every August so everyone can enjoy walking, running, biking, or skating up and down Park Ave. Street fairs are also added for good measure.

Mileage:

6.1 miles.

Elevation: 

The GPS elevation map indicates that there were 6 significant hills during this run, however, the run felt like one long pull uphill.

Hill Ratio:

6 hills for a ratio of 0.97.

Cigarette Smokers Per Mile Run: 

2.43.

Here’s the New York I know and love. However, this is probably not the healthiest of routes for the runner.

I’ve been thinking of a way to make this a more understandable stat. Think of it this way – if your high school coach asked you to run 6 miles and to inhale secondhand smoke 2.43 times per mile, would you question his training techniques? Right.

Safe after dark?

This route should be safe until late at night. I’d say 11pm to 12am is reasonable for most runners.

Crowd Scene?

Yes. You’ll head through three of the busiest areas in the City.

Running Surface:

Sidewalk for the most part.

Changing Station?

If you need to freshen up for an evening out with friends, you can always stop by JackRabbits on Lexington between 85th and 84th Sts.

Points of Interest:

This is my favorite part of this run. You see a pretty diverse swath of Manhattan via this route.

Starting at the World Trade Center PATH station, you’ll see roughly in this order:

  • The Freedom Tower
  • City Hall (and a quick peek of The Brooklyn Bridge)
  • One Police Plaza (or 1PP for you Law and Order fans)
  • The Federal Courthouse (also for you LAO fans)
  • The chaos that is Chinatown around Canal
  • Joe’s Public (the ones who run Shakespeare in the Park)
  • Union Square (with the 24-hour Best Buy and the digital hourglass clock just above)
  • The iconic insurance building they used in The Adjustment Bureau (around 24th St)
  • The section of Park Ave near Grand Central Terminal where Will Smith’s character in I Am Legend gets attacked by the smart monster
  • Grand Central Terminal itself
  • The Chrysler Building (the top of which is where Will Smith’s character in Men In Black 3 jumps from to travel back in time – I guess I watch a lot of Will Smith movies)
  • A section of Park Ave I am calling “Corporate Bank Headquarters Alley” which banks like Chase, Capital One, Bank of America and more call home (and they host interesting art shows on Park Ave from time to time also)
  • And finally the Upper East Side which, along Park Ave, is sort of like the suburbs for the 1%. Here you’ll see very wealthy people walking very pampered dogs and interacting with the doormen of their buildings.

Good for Groups:

Workable for 2-3 at the most. I had a few near misses as a single runner and moving at a pokey 10:30/mile pace.

Safe from Cars:

Not at all. Don’t fall asleep on this run and for goodness sake, don’t use headphones. Keep all those senses sharp.

Prospects for a Break-Free Run: 

Like I said, lots of people and lots of intersections including major cross roads at Canal, Houston, Houston, 14th, 23rd, 34th, 42nd, 57th, 59th, 72nd, and 79th.

Friends Run Into During Run:

0

© 2015 Danilo Torres. All rights reserved.

Manhattan: Downtown Post Office to UES via Broadway/Park Ave/3rd Ave

Feeling tired after yesterday’s interval training, I just wanted to log a few easy miles. However, I also wanted to stay engaged during my run and not zone out.  Running through the streets of Manhattan usually is good for keeping you on your toes and offering new and interesting ways to get decked during your run.

150403_Manhattan

Click on map to enlarge.

Route Description:

(Run 4/3/15) I started from Church and Barclay in downtown Manhattan then headed east to Boardway.  Then, I ran north on Broadway to 14th, east to Park Ave, north to 37th, then east to 3rd Ave, and north to 86th.

Mileage:

5.91 miles

Elevation: 

Minimal

Hill Ratio:

10ish hills for a ratio of 1.69.

CPMR: 

2.87 – almost 3 per mile. Not sure what the impact to my health is but probably a minimal difference considering all the other carcinogens floating around Manhattan anyway.

Safe after dark?

Safe to midnight since there are so many people around.

Crowd Scene?

Yes, goodness, yes! Don’t expect to hit a PR on this route.

Running Surface:

Cement and asphalt.

Changing Station?

None.  Maybe at Jack Rabbits on Lex between 84 and 85?

Points of Interest:

Views of the Freedom Tower, City Hall, Chinatown, Union Square, Grand Central, and Bloomingdales can be enjoyed on this run.

Good for Groups:

Not a good run for groups due to the crowds.

Safe from Cars:

Not really. But crossing over 100 intersections keeps you on your toes and engaged during the run.

Friends Run Into During Run:

1 (CO’L!)

© 2015 Danilo Torres. All rights reserved.

Manhattan: Murray Hill to the East River to the UES

Today, I had to get a short 5 miler in on the way home after a meeting in Murray Hill. Home is the Bronx, so I was trying to get into the Upper East Side to catch my Express Bus. So, here is where I went.

150401_UES

Click on map to enlarge.

Route Description:

(Run 4/1/15) That’s a start at 34th and Lex over to 1st Ave, north to the Queensboro Bridge where I jump on the East River path up to 96 with a 1 mile scramble around the UES to get to 5 miles. Started around 8pm.

Here are the objective-ish measures –

Mileage:

About 5.4 miles, if you can get your GPS watch to connect at the start of the run.

Elevation:

Minimal

Hill Ratio:

I counted 12 hills for a hill to mile ratio of 2.22

CPMR:

That’s Cigarette-smokers Per Mile Run.  I counted 6 over this 5.4 mile run for a CPMR of 1.11.  Actually kinda noticeable considering many other routes I run in Manhattan are well under 1.

Safe after dark?

Mostly run in Manhattan so safe until about 10pm imho.

Crowd Scene?

Not too much to deal with except for Murray Hill and the UES below 90th.

Running Surface:

Sidewalks in the City and cinderblock on the East River.

Changing Station?

Not really. There is a little park on 87th east of 3rd Ave for a quick shirt change.  Jack Rabbits is also on Lexington between 84th and 85th. You can use their dressing rooms before closing time around 8pm.

Points of Interest:

In Manhattan, it is hard not to run by points of interest but here is a quick list –

The United Nations – The Queensboro Bridge – The East River – Roosevelt Island – Carl Schurz Park

Good for Groups:

Actually, yes once you get out of Murray Hill and onto 1st Ave/East River Path.

Safe from Cars:

Yes, the East River and UES above 88th offer fairly stress-free running.

© 2015 Danilo Torres. All rights reserved.