Riverside is a beautiful section of Greenwich, Connecticut. With a population of a roughly 7,200 people and approximately 2,500 households, Riverside is mainly residential with an area of a little over two square miles. It is a wonderful community that offers great schools, a strong sense of family and neighborhood, convenience for commuters, and waterfront beauty on the Mianus River, Cos Cob Harbor, and Long Island Sound.
The town of Greenwich consists of several distinct sections or neighborhoods with their own mailing addresses and zip codes such as Riverside, Byram, Cos Cob, Glenville, Mianus, Old Greenwich and Greenwich. Riverside's Zip Code is 06878. Riverside is represented in the Greenwich town government by Representative Town Meeting District 5 (south of Route 1) and District 12 (north of Route 1).
Riverside has two sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places: Riverside Avenue Bridge, built in 1894 (listed in 1977) and the Samuel Ferris House, built in about 1760 (listed in 1989).
Riverside's nearby train stations make it a great residence for commuting to New York City.
The community is served primarily by 3 public elementary schools:
International School at Dundee, for ages 3-12 and approximately 345 students offers an International Baccalaureate program.
North Mianus School, built in 1925 with renovations and additions over the years. Almost all of the students live within walking distance.
Riverside School, founded in 1933 and enrolls more than 500 students from kindergarten through fifth grade.
A small portion of the neighborhood along Sheephill Road and Riverside Lane are served by Cos Cob School.
Originally known as Mianus Neck until 1890, Riverside has a long history dating back to the mid-1600s. Riverside was originally a community of farmers, fisherman and oystermen. In 1865, Mianus Neck was the location of the Continental Mower and Reaper Company which built a plant on the eastern shoreline of the Mianus River. Not a successful endeavor, it closed after only two years. Its plant operated briefly as a cotton oil mill which relocated to New Orleans.
Jeremiah Atwater, a real estate broker in New York who moved to Greenwich in 1865, soon recognized the potential of Mianus Neck and started buying land and constructing houses. Atwater, in association with Luke Vincent Lockwood, a New York attorney and Mianus Neck resident, succeeded in renaming Mianus Neck “Riverside” in 1869 to attract summer renters and homeowners. To further enhance their community, they established a new railroad stop, the Riverside train station. In addition, Lockwood, as superintendent of the St. Paul’s Episcopal Society Sunday School, collaborated with Atwater who donated land on Chapel Lane to organize and construct a chapel for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in 1876. The larger, current building at the corner of Riverside Avenue and Indian Head Road was dedicated on February 12, 1956. (Excerpted from Greenwich Historical Society recognition of The Riverside Avenue Bridge)
An article authored by Cameron Moseley and Margaret Moseley in the Greenwich Review: Special Commemorative Edition Greenwich Celebrates 350 Years gives an in-depth look at the history of Riverside (click on the link below to read this entertaining and informative piece).
Riverside Avenue Bridge
Riverside Avenue Bridge is the only surviving bridge in Connecticut (and one of only about a dozen in the entire country) that has major structural members made of cast iron. Cast iron was widely used in trusses up until the early 1870s. Because it breaks under tension (bending or stretching forces), cast iron is only suitable for compression members, such as the hollow tubes that make up the top chord and verticals of this bridge. In contrast, wrought iron, which is produced by rolling hot metal under pressure, could be used either in tension or in compression. As the American iron industry matured, wrought iron became more widely available, and after several disasters involving improperly engineered bridges that were part cast-iron, wrought iron totally replaced the earlier material for use in bridges.
Riverside Avenue Bridge incorporates several other archaic features. The form of the bridge is based on a truss shown in Squire Whipple's pioneering Treatise on Bridge building, published in 1847. The Whipple truss, which has diagonal tension members running across two panels, was popular with early engineers. The bridge also illustrates the specialized connections characteristic of early trusses. The cast-iron lower-chord junction boxes and the ribbed blocks through which the diagonal rods pass were two improvements on the Whipple truss patented by engineer Francis C. Lowthorp who designed this bridge. The bridge was fabricated by the Keystone Bridge Company which was co-founded by iron magnate Andrew Carnegie.
Riverside Avenue Bridge was originally part of a six-span, double-track railroad bridge constructed in 1871 over the Housatonic River from Stratford to Milford. When the New York and New Haven Railroad replaced the bridge in 1888, it salvaged several spans for re-use as highway overpasses. Riverside Avenue Bridge was re-erected over the railroad in Riverside replacing an existing grade crossing in 1894. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.
The relocated bridge is 164 feet long and 22 feet wide.
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