The IRT Flushing Line opened in stages between 1915 and 1928. The stations between Grand Central and Vernon-Jackson opened in 1915. Meanwhile, in Queens, the Hunters Point and Court House Square stations opened in November 1916, and the elevated stations out to 103rd/Corona Plaza in April 1917. There were 3 further extensions: to 111th Street in October 1925; Willets Point Boulevard (modern signage erroneously leaves off the “Boulevard”, as the actual Willets Point is at Fort Totten) in May 1927; and finally, an underground station on Main Street on January 2, 1928. The line was extended west two stops to Times Square by 1927. The Flushing Line is due to expand again, to the West Side Javits Convention Center, in late 2014.

Thus, here I am at what was once the end of the Flushing Line  between 1917 and 1925, at what was once called Corona Plaza/Alburtis Avenue. A couple of years ago this bit  of Roosevelt Avenue between National and 104th Streets was closed to vehicular traffic and became a true pedestrian plaza.

The “Walgreens” marquee seen used to belong to the Plaza Theatre, which opened in November 1927, surviving all the way to 2005 playing Hollywood fare with Spanish subtitles. It has been a drugstore since then.

Chicken chain Pollo Campero opened in Corona with some fanfare about a dozen years ago (as of 2014). The chain was founded in Guatemala in 1971 and after expanding into several countries in Central and South America, now has 50 branches in the States, as well as in Asia and Europe, over 300 in all.

The logo is in the “animal cannibal” tradition, with a smiling fowl holding a plateful of chicken and fries.



Categorized in: One Shots Subways & Trains Tagged with:

6 Responses to CORONA PLAZA

  1. Alan Gregg Cohen says:

    Interesting story. I never realized the existence of Corona Plaza, despite the many times decades ago, that I traveled the number 7 line from Main Street Flushing to Grand Central Station. The Plaza affords a nice openess in the otherwise dark canyon created by the Roosevelt Avenue “ell”. It’s nice that they adaptively re used the “Plaza Theatre” marquee when Walgreens opened in the former theater space. It’s too bad that they couldn’t have distinctively paved the closed portion of the asphalt street when they created the pedestrian plaza, and did a little more landscape-wise than the potted plants which seem too few in number. Otherwise, Corona Plaza, seems to function as a nice “downtown” focus for the Corona community, with retail, transit and a park all in one central location.

  2. BillyG says:

    Used to go to an Italian restaurant on 104th St.

    Right around the corner at the lower left of the photo.

    Family joint.

    Name escapes me.

    Our butcher, Jack Salerno, was on 103rd St, right off Roosevelt Ave.


    • Paul says:

      I’m guessing you’re referring to Tony’s Pizza on 104th Street. That’s the only Italian restaurant on 104th.

      • Nick Ballard says:

        On 104th street, a half block north of Roosevelt Ave, was Main Leo’s restaurant, and a half block was the Parkside restaurant — both made great pizza

    • Nick Ballard says:

      Right on the corner was Merkels pork store (Spelling?)

  3. april says:

    When I pulled this up on GoogleMaps, I nearly had a stroke. This is what they ‘give’ the people: some haphazardly strewn-about potted plants in the middle of inner city insanity, apparently some politicos’ idea of greenspace! And at what cost? – as nothing comes without a price. For the first time I appreciate where I am in Florida, and where a ton of former Bronx and Yonkers’ Hispanic residents have happily relocated sans complaint.

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