Gantry State Park in Hunters Point is undergoing yet another expansion and reconfiguration, which has already added a new ferry terminal. Even before those changes, though, the park has laid rusty railroad tracks here and there. Decades ago, a rail spur ran from Sunnyside Yards between 48th and 49th Avenues to the waterfront, where float barges unloaded goods for transport into the heart of Long Island. The LIRR once had substantial freight operations that have slowed to a trickle of what they once were.

More about this on Disappearing Railroads.


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  1. John Shea says:

    Railroad marine operations in NY harbor is a story unto itself. Rail access to the city was limited by the water and the railroads turned that to an advantage, although a really expensive one. All the lines terminating in Jersey – Lackawanna, Erie, Jersey Central, New York Central, Pennsylvania and Lehigh Valley had car floats, barges, scows and lighters they used to service yards throughout the city along with some through service via the Bay Ridge Branch. Ships in the harbor were also brought freight by railroad vessels. An amazing story and it’s all gone.

    • Dave D says:

      How true! Gone forever. As a preteen me and my friends would take the subway into the city on Saturdays to see the ships in port. At that time the High-Line was functional and I remember seeing rairoad cars loaded on what I thoght were barges enroute to NJ,

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