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Old 11-08-2013, 11:30 AM
Location: Planet Earth
3,849 posts, read 7,292,448 times
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Originally Posted by Dorian View Post
From what I heard they already have a bridge equipped to handle commuter train lines.
That's the Bayonne Bridge.

Originally Posted by Fred314X View Post
See above (post #122).

There was also a proposal to build a tunnel under the harbor, and connect the present SIRT line with the #1 train. Even though this would offer a more direct connection to Manhattan than a subway line from Staten Island to a Bay Ridge connection, the harbor tunnel would be almost prohibitively expensive...and who knows how long it would take to complete.
Of course, the boon to real estate prices would be tremendous.

Originally Posted by UpstaterInBklyn View Post
I don't see how taking a train over the Verrazano to Bay Ridge would be any faster than taking the SIR to the ferry.

Isn't the subway trip from 95th St. in Bay Ridge to lower Manhattan about 40 minutes?
Well, for starters, you have to wait to make the connection. (The SIR is currently scheduled to arrive 17 minutes before the ferry leaves during off-peak hours). Of course, that could be solved by adding more ferry service.

In any case, if it was connected to 59th Street in Brooklyn, you'd have direct express service to Manhattan.

Originally Posted by UpstaterInBklyn View Post
It is a shame is that the North shore branch of the SIR was dismantled, however. Fred, do you know why that happened?
It was the South Beach branch that was dismantled, not the North Shore branch. It is 100% intact west of Port Richmond (though overgrown, in many places, of course). East of Port Richmond, the ROW is there, but much of it washed into the water over the years.

Originally Posted by RUBIES77 View Post
There is the Staten Island Railroad, and a multitude of EXPRESS buses to take you into NYC, besides the four bridges, and the ferry. WE LIKE IT THE WAY IT IS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! More country than city................
The SIR doesn't bring you to Manhattan.
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Old 11-10-2013, 07:20 AM
18,236 posts, read 11,645,412 times
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There seems to be quite a lot of confusion and misinformation regarding rail tunnels to SI and the VNB.

Was born and raised on SI, left to attend college in the 1980's and am here to tell you there was no such "referendum" or anything else to be voted up, down or sideways about building a subway or any other rail tunnel to Staten Island.

First of all NYC and certainly New York City Transit/MTA didn't have the money. This was the "big bad old 1980's) of infamous New York City fame and it was all the City and the MTA could do to keep the subways and buses they had running much less thinking about building a new tunnel.

The waters between Whitehall in Manhattan and St. George in SI are very deep and the distance is five or more miles. It would be *VERY* expensive to build a subway to serve a route already covered by the ferry service for much less money.

As for the other suggestion, yes there was serious plans to build a railroad/subway from Brooklyn to Staten Island and on to New Jersey. The idea was to link train traffic with the then still operating B&O RR, where trains would take the North Shore ROW out to the rest of SI and on to NJ. For various reasons the project never got very far but two sections of tunnel were built; one from each side of SI and Brooklyn. Where are they? Right at the narrows where the VNB now stands.

It just so happens the narrows is just that; the narrowest of the harbor between SI and Brooklyn. This made it a naturally attractive spot for RR tunnels because it would mean shorter lengths. It also made a great spot for a bridge and as one recalls the anchorages for the east and west sides of the bridge are at or near the spots where the aforementioned tunnel stubs reside. Thus for that reason among others stick a fork in the RR tunnel idea, it is done.

Robert Moses *HATED* railroads and did everything he could in his plans and projects to make sure they did not include rail and could not be added at a later date. Railroad persons one has spoken with over the years all say the same; the grade to the VNB would not support trains. Unlike the GWB that was supposed to have rail included (the lower levels) the VNB was designed for motor traffic period.

The following links do a pretty good job of explaining rail and transportation history on SI.

The futureNYCSubway: Staten Island | vanshnookenraggen

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge (I-278)

A subway tunnel to Staten Island, 80 years in the making :: Second Ave. Sagas
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Old 11-10-2013, 07:36 AM
18,236 posts, read 11,645,412 times
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Originally Posted by Dorian View Post
Are there a lot of places to rent in SI, apartments, townhouses, houses, or duplexes? From what I heard I'm getting the impression that there is more house than places to rent. I'm getting a little bit confused now, is Island more expensive then the other 3 boroughs (excluding Manhattan) or less expensive? I here some people say that it is extremely blue collar then I hear other people say that it is basically suburban with most people living in houses. Maybe I am wrong, but when I hear suburb I think more expensive.
There are apartments and some condos and co-ops but much of SI housing is single and multi-family (1-4) homes. Even then you'll find most apartments are say the second floor or basement of a home. There are a few private apartment complexes near Silver Lake and on Clove Road (the Fountains) and again others scattered here and there around the Island.
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Old 11-10-2013, 08:03 AM
18,236 posts, read 11,645,412 times
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Was born and raised on SI, left in the 1980s to go to college then settled in the City, but still am home often enough and of course on holidays.

First persons talking about SI as they see it today have no idea how wonderful it *USED* to be; back in the days before certain politicians got their tastes and let the real estate lobby run wild over the place.

You couldn't ask for a better place to live and raise a family. As kids we could stay out long as our parents allowed, go anywhere we wanted on bikes or foot and had no worries.

For such a "big" island it was a very small place with tight knit communities. Even if someone didn't know you directly there was a 99% chance they knew someone who knew someone that did or at least knew your family. My first grade teacher taught my father and uncles. Later my music teacher in HS knew my aunt (yeah, kind of hard to get away with anything. *LOL*), but it gave you a warm safe feeling.

The friends you made from your block or even grade school would likely follow you though high school and the rest of your life. Am still in contact with people I know from then and when am home if I run into their parents or other family members it is always "hello', "how are you" and "how's the family"?

The Staten Island of today has been ruined by over development and changed by shifting demographics.

Starting around the late 1980's or so developers sized upon SI as the "last frontier" of available land for building in NYC (which to an extent it was) and began putting up those horrible spit and paste town houses and other monstrosities on every bit of open land they could get their mitts on. Zoning was changed to allow density that turned a lot where a nice old one family home stood for ages to be torn down. In it's place would go a four family town house built so cheaply you can hear rats pissing on cotton inside from half a house down.

Many old school persons or families either packed up and moved, or are dying off. The first was helped along by developers offering vast sums for homes because they wanted the land. If your house sat on a large lot it was like hitting the lottery.

Hand in hand with this building boom came the waves across the guinea gangplank (aka Verrazano Narrows Bridge) fleeing the "changes" to their areas of South Brooklyn (Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, etc...).

Don't get me wrong, SI was never a racial utopia, indeed blacks and other minorities literally valued their lives cheaply going into Rosebank and beyond/over to the South Shore: but by and large people kept to themselves and got on. However this new group are something else.

First though they are Russians, Albanians and other Eastern Europeans along with Italians they all like to pretend/look like/ act like they are the last. These Soprano wannabees wouldn't know a made man if he pissed on them because they were on fire. Yet they all run around in track suits, driving Benzs, BMWs or Nissans like they own the roads and have horrible attitudes. They have names for blacks, latinos, "illegals", gays, lesbians, and always ready to point the finger. Yet when you pick up the SI Advance guess who's name is in the paper for selling drugs, wife beating, theft, assault, etc....

All this being said SI has the highest number of NYC workers IIRC. Lots of NYPD, NYFD and so forth. They come out to the Island for the same reason doctors, lawyers and many others do; it is place where you can still find a nice affordable house and raise a family.
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