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Friday, July 17, 2015

There is Gold under those...

  Several weeks ago, someone started a thread in subchat dealing with the status of covered streetcar tracks in New York City.  Are they considered "Historic Places"?  ...was one of comments and also "How much of the former street railway tracks remain in New York and elsewhere after  buried for decades under layers of asphalt?".  Before this topic was brought up, I came across this New York Public Library Digital Archive shot of the intersection of 60th Street and 16th Avenue in Boro Park, Brooklyn.  There is no credit given to the photographer but the date is 1935.    This is a shot facing east I believe and you can see, if you look closely, a set of trolleybus wires and perhaps at the extreme right, a trolley coach.  The focus of this Depression Era shot was on the sewer construction.  Notice that it reaches the trolley tracks.    According to B. Linder in the April 1978 edition of the New York Division Bulletin, ( Vol. 21, No. 4, p.5), a detailed history of the 16th Avenue Streetcar was given.  Until 1913, the line extended only to 58th Street and 16th Avenue since being established in 1905.  58th Street is two blocks from this intersection and may be visible in the photo.  From 1913 to 1932, line was extended a few blocks to 63rd Street and 16th Avenue with a one track stub terminal in the street.  The line was abandoned on May 27, 1932 and the first trolleybus line in Brooklyn was established.  What is interesting in that in most of the track diagrams presented by Bernard Linder, the track removal dates were not included.  We have here,  however the following information:

Tracks Removed on 16th Avenue:

McDonald Ave - Dahill Road   1933
Dahill Road - 54th Street   1932- 1933
54th Street - 60th Street   Jan-March, 1937
60th Street - 63 rd Street   1936.

(See B. Linder Map, page 5, in this blog)

This is valuable information so we can see that the tracks in the photo were removed here in 1936 and the photo shows the intersection in 1935.

More to follow on the gold that is buried under the streets to follow.

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