Photo Gallery: Flushing Avenue
We are a couple of blocks south of the LIRR freight
line, where we find ourselves standing in the midst of...another
booming LIRR freight line! Even the infamous Rockaway Line Dead
Tracks to the east have more life than this decrepit freight
spur. Once upon a more prosperous industrial era, these tracks
must have fed plenty of bursting freight cars to the Long Island
Railroad's main freight trackage, and thence the main line proper.
Some of those cars got loaded and unloaded right here in the
bowels of this classic 1930s era functionalistic industrial building,
with a beige and orange color brick scheme and casement windows
so typical of the Art Deco period.
What comes around goes around and the depression has indeed returned, at least to these tracks, if not to the general rust belt style industry that this area once thrived upon.
Unlike the freight tracks that this spur merges with a few blocks to the east, the spur seems completely abandoned, but as the tracks are more-or-less clear with minimal floral growth poking through, it is probable they are still officially active. The only traffic I witnessed on them however, were SUVs using them as a shortcut to get from the northbound side of Flushing's erstwhile service road, to the the southbound.
As for Flushing Avenue, the southbounders,
led by the bus, are finally emerging from their exhaustive sojourn
along the desolate Flushing Avenue Expressway. 54th Street is
coming up, with a major intersection at Metropolitan Avenue only
a couple of blocks past.
Below, two north facing shots. The first from the spur overpass and the second below it. Perhaps one of the greatest ironies surrounding this ghostly spur is that it was awarded such a relatively modern and well tended crossing, all scattered truck fenders aside.
|The spur comes to a mournful, and maybe merciful end not far to the west of here, just shy of Bushwick Avenue in Brooklyn. Before it terminates, it gets to skip over the dregs of the English Kills, which feeds into Newton Creek at the Brooklyn-Queens border. That has to be a pretty miserable existance, to be a tributary to a creek. Well, that is sort of what this rail spur is, a tributary to the railroad version of a creek.|
© 2001, Jeff Saltzman. All rights reserved.