Community Greens

People of all colors discussing evergreen ideas.

Harlem @ 125th Street

harlem at 125th st

Looking south down the open railroad cut along Park Avenue, circa 1880. To the right, you can see the platform of the 125th Street station.

The New York & Harlem Railroad was incorporated downtown in 1831; by 1837, the line was extended up to #Harlem, and in 1844, a station was built at 125th Street, with the trains running on steam power and the tracks at street level. In 1871, the New York & Harlem was consolidated along with the New York & New Haven and Hudson River railroads into the larger New York Central Railroad, with all the lines connecting at 42nd Street, at a new depot called “Grand Central” that was located at what was then considered to be the northern reaches of the city (when 42nd Street was still little more than a cow path).

Starting in 1872, the New York Central began putting their tracks in tunnels underground; this project, known as the “Park Avenue Improvement,” ran from 56th to 96th streets and hid the trains from street view. From 96th Street to 115th Street, a viaduct was built above, but north of there the tracks were placed below the street in an open cut. The platforms of the 125th Street station (pictured here) were accessed by stairs that connected from street level down into the cut, where you could access ticket windows and waiting rooms.

By 1890, the surrounding area was rapidly developing, and north of 125th Street, a new ship canal was planned on the Harlem River, so the railroad needed to elevate the tracks in order for the trains to travel above the ships as they crossed the river heading north. Therefore, the viaduct was extended north from 115th Street and a new station designed by Morgan O’Brien was built at 125th Street, directly over the old one. That station opened in 1897 and still stands today.

Interestingly, the old station was not completely destroyed, and parts of the platform still survive in the basement of the present station.

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One extra large egg (whole with the yolk) contains:

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