Wednesday, April 20, 2011

New York City's former "El"s

The building on the right in this view still exists, see the Google streetview below

Although they had their own rights of way above the streets, most of Manhattan's elevated lines succumbed to real estate pressure about their noise, and the 'industrial' look.

The clip above covers the end of IRT Third Avenue Line, commonly known as the Third Avenue El, - an elevated railway in Manhattan and the Bronx - which was closed in Manhattan in 1955 and in the Bronx by 1973. The first segments of the line opened in Manhattan in 1878 and were operated by an independent railway company. It was acquired by the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) and eventually became part of the New York subway system. After the end of the Third Avenue El, the East Side was left with only the overcrowded IRT Lexington Avenue Line as the only subway east of 5th Avenue, which remains the case.

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