Vestiges of World's Fair spur

OGR Forum Member
 
November 2, 2011 12:03 PM

I was just reading "Subway to the World's Fair" by Frederick A Kramer. It's about the IND and IRT/BMT connections to the 1939 World's Fair in Flushing, New York. Seems the IND built an at-grade trestle through the ash swamp to the fairgrounds. It spurred off the Jamaica storage yard and ran along Mt Hebron cemetery terminating right before Horace Harding Blvd. Does anyone know if there are any vestiges of this spur remaining today or was it completely removed without a trace?
 
[Service, comfort and style for all passenger silhouettes]
 
 
View Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 2, 2011 2:51 PM

The right-of-way was used for the Van Wyck Expressway when it was built. I don't know if there are any traces remaining where the spur and the highways' paths diverged, but (assuming a lack of better info) one place to speculate is to locate where the station would have been and see what's there now via aerial photos from Google/Bing maps.

(edit: links added)
World's fair Railroad (Wikipedia)
World's Fair Line (NYCSubway.org)

---PCJ
 

My YouTube videos

Make your own MPC-style boxes for rolling stock--See how to do it

 

"Wait... Why am I rolling? Am I moving or are the trees moving? What'd you say about my brakes? Youtookoutmywhaaat?

Holy Cow I Can't Staaahp!!"

--MAD's Thomas the "Unstoppable" Tank engine

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 3, 2011 5:18 PM

Someone has asked about this not long ago, and I remember when I did some searches on the net that some of the signal equipment from that line was still out there, though I don't know how good their information was.
 
The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 3, 2011 5:20 PM

quote:
Originally posted by bigkid:
Someone has asked about this not long ago, and I remember when I did some searches on the net that some of the signal equipment from that line was still out there, though I don't know how good their information was (I noticed that was mentioned in the wiki article). According to wiki, the station itself was demolished
 
The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 14, 2011 10:47 AM

I try to avoid that section of the Van Wyck like the plague. I now use Main St when headed to JFK.

Next time I can hear the conversation in the car...

Dad, why are we on the Van Wyck....and what the heck are you looking for.


rat
 
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 14, 2011 4:10 PM

You won't see these signals from the Van Wyck because they are installed and in service on Track D6 from Continental Ave into the Jamaica yard. This is per the Subway Resources site.

Before the Worlds Fair Line, These tracks were used for yard movements and incorporating them in the Worlds Fair Line necessitated adding protection and speed restrictions for Mainline railroad use. Seven signals on track D6 were modified with 2 shot Grade time approach signals on the curve where the line diverged from the Queens Blvd Subway Right of way and entered the Jamaica yard. After the Fair closed, everything on the Worlds fair Line was removed including the station platforms, tracks, layup track connection at Jamaica yard, signals and towers from The Worlds Fair Station back to the Jamaica Yard. The seven modified signals on track D6 remained in service since the track was still being used for movements into the Jamaica yard after the Worlds fair line was removed.

One has to wonder about the planning going on at the time. The Worlds fair Line gave the city a double track subway line into Flushing Meadow Park, which with a short northward extension, could have reached the LIRR's Whitestone branch which had been closed for about a decade. Use of this branch could have extended subway service into the College Point, Whitestone and Bayside area of Queens. How nice it would be to have that line in service today.
 

LIRR Steamer

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 15, 2011 7:27 PM

LIRR Steamer,

That is preposterous. The NY City IND Subway system would never even entertain the idea of taking over an LIRR right of way. Big Grin
 
[Service, comfort and style for all passenger silhouettes]
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 15, 2011 10:35 PM

351-DD1----The 63rd Ave station on the Queens Blvd Line I believe had facilities to make a connection with the LIRR Rockaway Branch in Rego Park. That was 15 years or so before the city acquired the Rockaway Branch and started operating trains on that line. The city's interest in that Branch predates the 63rd Ave station construction by a number of years.
 

LIRR Steamer

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 16, 2011 3:21 PM

I happened to be checking weather.com and there was a story on most congested roads in the country and lo and behold...the Van WycK Expressway made the cut.

rat
 
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 16, 2011 5:16 PM

Wow, LIRR Steamer, that's interesting. I was always intrigued by that stretch of abandoned line between White Pot and Ozone Park when I lived in NY.
 
[Service, comfort and style for all passenger silhouettes]
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 18, 2011 5:35 PM

LIRR-
Not surprising really, though I agree with you it would make sense. One reason it may not have happened was with the threat of war looming, they didn't want to tie up resources building such a line. If I had to make a guess, I would bet someone actually proposed doing that, and thanks to Robert Moses' influence it was shot down, from everything I have read and been told by people knowledgeable about the TA from the time Moses hated mass transit and was busy doing everything he could to promote highways and private cars as 'mass transit'. The only reason the World's fair line was built was because Moses wanted to promote attendance at the show (which was his baby, after all), but in terms of long term strategy, well, you get the drift.

To give you an idea,when they built the Van Wyck was being built, people proposed buying extra land to make the highway wider, to allow possible right of way for trains down the middle to allow for a direct subway line to JFK. The extra cost of doing so was actually pretty minimal, and would have allowed flexibility, but Moses answer as always was "no trains" (and when they built the airtrain thing to connect jamaica station with JFK, due to the lack of right of way it cost them many times what it would have been had Moses not shot the proposal down).
 
The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
Become a Premium Member of the OGR Forum
 
November 24, 2011 11:28 AM

Robert Moses was both a hero and a despot. Long Islanders enjoy the Northern State, Southern State, Sagtikos / Sunken Meadow, the Belt, the Van Wyck, the Cross Island and other roads because of him. The despot side of Moses was the demise of the Long Island Motor Parkway, and the decay of the subways and Els before the MTA. Theorello LaGuardia did his part by dooming the street car and trolley lines. Before these two, New York City transit suffered under the corrupt Boss Tweed who had a strangle hold on the trolley and street car lines.
 

Bobby Ogage

TCA 04-57239

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 24, 2011 9:56 PM

Let us not forget Mayor Hyland.
Nate
 
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
Become a Premium Member of the OGR Forum
 
November 25, 2011 12:42 AM

Wasn't it Mayor Hylan and Fiorello LaGuardia
 

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
Become a Premium Member of the OGR Forum
 
November 25, 2011 8:53 AM

Oops. I misspelled LaGuardia's first name. Oh well.
 

Bobby Ogage

TCA 04-57239

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 25, 2011 7:28 PM

Ben,
You are correct. I spelled his name wrong.
Nate
 
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
Become a Premium Member of the OGR Forum
 
November 26, 2011 6:50 AM

Hey Ben,
Mayor Hylan is that where we get the name Hylan Blvd. from?
Also Fiorello, is that where we get you from?
 
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
Become a Premium Member of the OGR Forum
 
November 26, 2011 9:37 AM

Hi Luigi
Yes Hylan Blvd is named after Mayor Hylan. As for that other guy that was his first name. Its my last but it is spelled a little different I have an extra i. It means little flower in Italian. That is why they call him the Little Flower. You also see a number of things in New York named Little flower or LaGuardia like the airport. He was also the one that unified the NY Transit system
 

 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
OGR Forum Member
 
November 26, 2011 8:09 PM

quote:
Originally posted by Bobby Ogage:
Robert Moses was both a hero and a despot. Long Islanders enjoy the Northern State, Southern State, Sagtikos / Sunken Meadow, the Belt, the Van Wyck, the Cross Island and other roads because of him. The despot side of Moses was the demise of the Long Island Motor Parkway, and the decay of the subways and Els before the MTA. Theorello LaGuardia did his part by dooming the street car and trolley lines. Before these two, New York City transit suffered under the corrupt Boss Tweed who had a strangle hold on the trolley and street car lines.


Overall I would say not much heroic about Robert Moses, and not just about transit issues. The highways on Long Island destroyed the livelyhood of farmers when he used eminent domain to force the roads through their fields (with little recompense) while he was more then willing to move the road to accomodate the rich who still had estates out there (on the other other hand, in building Jones Beach he did a number on some of the richer set, to be able to build it).When the TBTA's books were finally opened after Moses was forced from power, they found out that it had cost the city a lot of money, despite the myth put out that TBTA 'saved' the city money, and so forth. He also was responsible in no small part for the decline of NYC and other cities, his obsession with building roads right through the center of neighborhoods and such led, for example, to the decay in the South Bronx thanks to the Cross bronx Expressway. There was good to what he did, he did bring desperately needed jobs to the city and left behind parks and such, there is no doubt, but there was a cost to it, and the kind of power he had should never have been granted to any one person, he was a despot, unelected and with power that for many years was unchecked.

In terms of mass transit, he was a disaster area. When they were building the Van Wyck, planners wanted to have an easement in the middle of the expressway (it would have been relatively cheap to buy the extra land), that would have allowed for direct access to JFK via mass transit. The second avenue subway was not built when they floated the 500 million bond issue in the early 50's because of him, and he had influence at the state and federal level that gave short shrift to mass transit. Likewise he fought for years the state running the commuter railroads, which led to the decline of both the LIRR and and what is now Metro North (ex NYC), both the Penn and the NYC had offered those lines to the state for relatively cheap money, but Moses basically blocked it with his de facto veto....

His web was interconnected with almost everything that happened in the NY area from the 20's onward, and in many ways you can trace the near downfall of NY (and in more then a few cases, other cities) to his influence and power. On top of everything else, Moses was an elitist of the worse sort, he had contempt for the working class (which back then was most people) or the poor, and when he built those highways on Long Island it was as a convenience for the upper classes, he probably was upset by the growth of the burbs post WWII as happened where it was a migration of the working and middle classes.
 
The person who dies with the best toys dies a happy person
 
 
Like Like (0 likes)
PermalinkView Printer Friendly Format
 
ClosedAdditional replies and votes are not permitted on this topic.