Subway FAQ: Evidence of Former Lines and Connections

From nycsubway.org

Connections to old, abandoned, and demolished elevated lines are still visible at the following locations.

  1. IRT White Plains Road Line: Just north of the 149th Street/Third Avenue station, exiting the tunnel portal, one can see the initial framework of the Third Avenue El line. There used to be a connection from the White Plains Road line to the Third Avenue El, which ran south across the Harlem River to Manhattan. The other end of the Third Avenue El connected to the White Plains Road line at the lower level of the Gun Hill Road station (Closed 1973). Also on the White Plains Road line is the remnant of the short section of track to the original Bronx Park terminal (Closed August 4, 1952).
  2. IRT Woodlawn Line: North of the 161st Street - Yankee Stadium station is the framework for the connection from the 9th Avenue elevated line. After the demolition of the 9th Avenue El, the short section between the Woodlawn line and the Polo Grounds operated as a shuttle (Closed August 13, 1958). For a full tour, visit The 9th Avenue Elevated-Polo Grounds Shuttle.
  3. IRT Dyre Avenue Line: The Dyre Avenue line was part of the New York, Westchester, and Boston Railway; it continued north beyond Dyre Ave. to White Plains and Port Chester; and south of the present connection to the White Plains Road line at 180th St., to 133rd St where it ran along side the New Haven Railroad. The platforms of the NYW&B station are still visible at East 180th Street station and are sometimes used to store trains. (The station at this location was closed by the NYW&B in 1938, and reopened for Dyre Avenue shuttle service 1941-1957.) The structure south of East 180 St ends abruptly at the foot of 177 St. A portion of the structure, which ran into Amtrak's North East Corridor, was demolished in anticipation that a new Coliseum Bus Depot would be built.
  4. IRT Flushing Line: part of the trackway from the Queensborough Bridge line is still visible at the east end of Queensborough Plaza. (Bridge service ended 6/13/1942, use of northern half of Queensborough Plaza station ended October 1949.)
  5. BMT Nassau Street-Jamaica Line: used to connect to the south side of the Manhattan Bridge north of Chambers Street. The trackways are still used for train storage and are visible from passing J/M/Z trains. (Closed November 26? 28? 1967 when Chrystie Street opened.)
  6. Manhattan Bridge - Canal Street Original Subway: Heading northbound over the Manhattan Bridge north side, an abandoned tunnel is visible before entering the subway to Grand Street, which was the former connection to the Broadway Express. Heading northbound on the south side, the remains of the tunnel to the BMT Nassau loop is briefly visible. This area was reconfigured as part of the 1960s Chrystie Street construction project.
  7. Fulton St. El: Trackways are still visible at BMT Canarsie Line stations at Broadway Junction/East New York and Atlantic Ave. Framework for the el was until early 1998, visible at the Franklin Shuttle station at Franklin Avenue and Fulton Street. The structure served as a pedestrian walkway for customers going to the Fulton St subway. This structure was demolished as part of the Franklin Shuttle modernization. Also, on the A line heading northbound (westbound) from 80th Street, you can see the stub end of the old BMT Fulton El continuing straight ahead while the A curves into the tunnel and Grant Ave. Station.
  8. BMT Nassau Street-Jamaica Line: Upper level station at Myrtle Avenue was Myrtle Ave. El line to Jay Street. (Closed south of Broadway October 4, 1969, demolished 1970.) Also, the cutoff of the short line from Marcy Avenue to the Broadway Ferry landing is still visible east of Marcy Avenue (used for revenue service until 1916, used to store equipment until 1942).
  9. BMT Culver Line: At 9th Ave./39th St. and at Ditmas Ave. the original Culver line (later the Culver Shuttle) connected. (The trackway is visible at Ditmas Ave. and the ramps are visible at 9th Avenue.) On the other side of 9th Ave. the ramps to the old BRT/BMT 5th Avenue Elevated are still visible from passing trains.
  10. Honorary mention: On PATH, the tunnel heading for the proposed Astor Place line can be seen north of 9th St.
  11. The LIRR Rockaway Line (Ozone Park Branch): the right of way is still clearly visible near Woodhaven Boulevard. The line ends where the IND subway meets with the former right of way south of Liberty Av. In the early 1950s, the LIRR structure between the present Far Rockaway Terminus and the Mott Av A train station was demolished when the Rockaway Line was acquired by the City of New York.
  12. BMT Broadway/Jamaica El west of Gates Avenue: Although not visible on the elevated level, from the street one can see where the structure turned onto Lexington Av to head toward the Brooklyn Bridge (between the columns).

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