SHORE ROAD, Douglaston

by Kevin Walsh

I have been bicycling in earnest again since mid-2017, though I take a few months off during the cold months since I don’t like battling headwinds. I still stick to bike paths at this stage (and the city has closed down much of the Joe Michaels Mile stretch along Cross Island Parkway until who knows when) so I take the bike into Douglaston more often. The hills will strengthen my legs over the long run. I like the stretch along Shore Road, which faces Little Neck Bay.

Three boroughs have Shore Roads. I was intimately familiar with Brooklyn’s Shore Road in my home town of Bay Ridge, which runs along the Narrows and faced the water until the 1930s, when Robert Moses installed landfill and built the Belt Parkway. The Bronx’s Shore Road is, oddly, not really near a shore until its northern stretch. It is a northeast extension of Pelham Parkway within Pelham Bay Park and is a frequent route to City Island and Orchard Beach. It’s the Bronx’s incarnation of a country road and loses its sidewalks for most of its run.

Seen here is one of my favorite buildings along Shore Road, at Arleigh Road (when Douglaston was laid out in the 19th Century, it had British-themed street names — then the Queens Topographical Bureau gave them numbers, until the old names were revived a few decades ago.). It was constructed in 1909 for Dr. E.J. Johnson, and its porch faces Little Neck Bay. I like to think I’d be out on the porch not only on sunny days like this, but also when a storm was raging over the bay and the water and waves were pounding all around. As far as architectural detail, the Landmarks Preservation Commission report says…

I may not know much about architecture but I know what I like! I love the LPC reports, but one weakness for the layman and casual architecture buff is that you need a guidebook of architectural terms to really get the best out of the reports…

Check out the ForgottenBook, take a look at the gift shop, and as always, “comment…as you see fit.”


1 comment

S. Saltzman June 11, 2018 - 2:09 pm

I have always been fascinated by the dead end lights shown in the photo. Shore Blvd. in Astoria used to have them at every intersection between Con Edison and Hoyt Avenue South. According to the latest Traffic Signal Maintenance contracts, there are 324 “Street End Signals” in operation. 24 on Staten Island; 48 in Brooklyn; 112 in the Bronx; 75 in Manhattan; and 65 in Queens.


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