Queensboro Bridge Trolley Station, Spanning East River & Blackwell's Island, New York, New York County, NY
Significance: Designed in 1909 by George Palmer and Henry Hornbostel, architect of the Queensboro Bridge, this Kiosk was one of 5 entrances to an underground trolley terminal. Trolleys running on the lower level provided easy access to Blackwells (Welfare) Island and Queens. With the advent of automobile travel, the trolley system was reduced to two lanes in 1916. It continued until 1957 and was New York City's last operating line. Considered noteworthy elements of the Bridge Plaza in their time, only two kiosks remain in place, and both are scheduled for demolition.
Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: FN-388
Survey number: HABS NY-6070
The history of New York City's transportation system. New York City is distinguished from other U.S. cities for its low personal automobile ownership and its significant use of public transportation. New York is the only city in the United States where over half of all households do not own a car (Manhattan's non-ownership is even higher, around 75%; nationally, the rate is 8%). New York City has, by far, the highest rate of public transportation use of any American city. New York City also has the longest mean travel time for commuters (39 minutes) among major U.S. cities. The Second Industrial Revolution fundamentally changed the city – the port infrastructure grew at such a rapid pace after the 1825 completion of the Erie Canal that New York became the most important connection between all of Europe and the interior of the United States. Elevated trains and subterranean transportation ('El trains' and 'subways') were introduced between 1867 and 1904. Private automobiles brought an additional change for the city by around 1930, notably the 1927 Holland Tunnel.