DITMARS STREET, Bushwick

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Ditmars Street runs for one block between Broadway and Myrtle Avenue in Bushwick. It’s unremarkable in every way, except that there is an elevated train at both ends, so it’s probably the only one-block street in NYV for which that claim can be made. Here we are facing the last remnant of the old Myrtle Avenue that once ran from Metropolitan Avenue west across the Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan. The unused flyover brought trains over the Broadway el.

1/7/13





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13 Responses to DITMARS STREET, Bushwick

  1. joe bernstein says:

    Some of the unused steel structure stays in place for stability purposes I would guess-removing large amounts of structural steel would be dangerous with today’s heavy trains-these els were designed for wooden cars

  2. steven says:

    I think the the city should have kept some of those train lines that they tore down over the years. Brooklyn has changed so much that the lines in Brooklyn are getting overcrowded.

    • Indeed, it would have provided a direct subway ride from Queens to downtown Brooklyn without going through Manhattan. This old train line was last designated as the MJ before it was torn down in 1969.

  3. Steve says:

    I would have thought that there is significant value in that steel nowadays, and the MTA would have taken her down by now.

  4. Alan says:

    There are many area where the old structures are still in place throughout the system. It serves as a great history lesson as to the extent of where trains used to run above ground.

  5. John Dereszewski says:

    Beyond having an elevated subway at each of its ends, the portion of the M train that flows into the J line runs just west of Ditmars. You run right past Ditmars when you take the M to and from the Central and Myrtle Avenue stops.

  6. Simon says:

    Wasn’t a Forgotten NY tour conducted in that area about 2 years ago?

  7. joe bernstein says:

    @steven-right you are-Chicago kept a very large portion of their el system-I lived there for 9 years and always liked riding the el-there were some tight curves and the motormen would often hot rod the trains,occasionally with disastrous results

    • Tal Barzilai says:

      The reason why Chicago still has most of its els still around mainly has to do with the foundation in the area they are. Part of the CTA are subways, but not that much. Part of the reason why NYC took down most of the els is because they were obsolete to the subway in that it got people around much faster, plus the foundation was sound enough to build them. Also, many saw the els has being obstructive and creating blight, not to mention creating an obstacle course for motor vehicles. Overall, it had to do with what worked more efficiently, and the subway proved at its early day to do just that.

  8. Someone says:

    Why was the Myrtle el torn down much later than the other els, anyways?

  9. Steph says:

    I lived on this street for many years. I never understood the grid in this area. And I agree with many others the K train which I believe was the myrtle ave line should not have been torn down. So many el trains in Brooklyn should not have been torn down. I miss this little street. It was quite quiet with the exception of a few speeding cars down the block trying to cut traffic. Loved the access to transportation, the people, def miss what was once “home”

    =(

    • Someone says:

      I think it was torn down because of safety concerns following a fire on the el, not because the MTA sincerely wanted it removed.

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