The South Brooklyn Railway's right-of-way, as it runs adjacent to the Gowanus Expressway's 39th Street exit ramp.
The Gowanus Expressway Virtual Tour at OldNYC.com contains pictures the South Brooklyn Railway's 3rd Avenue yard (Prospect Expressway to 36th Street, Gallery #3).
Like many of the old railroads along the Brooklyn waterfront, The South Brooklyn Railway's main function was to deliver boxcars and freight to nearby industry and factories along the line. Carfloats were utilized as the South Brooklyn Railroad's tugs would move boxcars from Hoboken New Jersey to the railroad's Second Avenue yard in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. As was the case with many of the other freight railroad lines in New York City, the South Brooklyn Railroad's fate was sealed as the trucking industry and large container shipping companies caused the railroad's service offerings to be less appealing, as the railroad's customers turned to utilize these newer methods of transportation.
OldNYC.com contributor JJ Earl explains, "According to the web site
New York Area Railways,
the South Brooklyn Railway company has only one customer - the NYCTA.
Last summer the line was utilized for the movement of a fan trip of 'D'
type cars to Third Avenue. The MTA does own the right-of-way as well
as the railroad itself but it is operated as a separate entity and under
the jurisdiction of the FRA."
Here, the Cross Harbor Railroad tracks merge with the South Brooklyn Railways tracks, as they continue on in to South Brooklyn Railway's 2nd Avenue yard.
Inside the Second Avenue yard, new rails, ballast, ties and bumpers have been installed by the MTA to be used as a storage yard for train equipment.
Three old subway cars are parked in the yard. I wonder if the New York City Transit Museum has use for these old relics.
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