New York Subway

The New York Subway is a prominent landmark in the New York City. It is as famous as the Statute of Liberty. It contains several railway routes that connect people between the cities every day.

It ranks as the top ten busiest railway stations in the world. The subway system in London and Mexico city has a lower number of boarding compare with the New York Subway.

The New York Subway is a large network of railway system that consists of four hundred and seventy stations. The route of the railway system is approximately 230 miles in length. The New York Subway has its own history background.

New York Subway2 New York Subway

According to a 2005 statistic report, the New York Subway serves more than 1.45 billion passengers per year.  The report shows that six and a half million people access the stations in the New York Subway system. The numbers of passengers will increase as the petrol cost increase each year.

The New York Subway is a property of the state of New York City. Currently, the upper east section of the subway is under construction.

Contrary to its name, it runs both underground and aboveground. About forty percent of the routes are located on top of the surface. In places that are packed with high rise building, such as Manhattan, the subway runs underground. The purpose the train runs underground is to save space. By using the New York subway, passengers can travel to their destination within minimal time.


The New York Subway consists of numerous routes that connect the residents in New York with other cities and towns. In the past, the railroad is the first transportation method to connect the New Yorkers with Coney Island. The railroad in Manhattan and Brooklyn are the first to be built in the New York subway system.

During 1898, many counties join forces to connect the cities and towns in the Greater New York region. The developers feel that the best way to connect the cities is to use a subway system. The cost of the subway system is expensive. It will be too expensive for a private company to bear all the cost. Hence, it obtains a contract with IRT (Interborough Rapid Transit Company) to develop the subway system. The contract states that a part of the profit will go to the IRT.

The first subway carries passengers from City Hall to the Bronx region. The construction of the first subway is completed in 1904. Later, more subway routes are being added. The developers originally hesitated on whether to use direct current or alternating current for the subway. They finally decided to use the direct current proposed by Thomas Edison. The New York subway uses direct current.

Since 1913, the city had entered into several agreements with the IRT and BRT (Brooklyn Rapid Transport Company). The purpose of the agreement is to increase the number of subway routes. Each agreement focuses on joining several cities through subway. In this way, the cities and town in the whole New York state are joined together by subway train.

The city collected enough fund to build its own subway system. The fund was obtained from investment in the private sector. Eventually, the Independent Subway System was built. The IND system is the most advanced subway system in the world. The IND system was build after the BRT and IRT Company is purchased by the city. The city took over the BRT and IRT company during 1940. The damaged subway lines in the city are removed.

New York Subway1 New York Subway

The city continues to add lines in order to cover all the suburban areas. Most of the subway system fell under disrepair. During the 1980s, the subway system had deteriorated and is not safe for use by the passengers. The restoration work of the subway began in the 1985. Today, the city continues to perform maintenance job in the subway station.


The New York Subway system offers a number of lines including the IRT Line, BMT Line, IND Line and Staten Island Rapid Transit. The IRT lines in the New York Subway system include Interborough Rapid Transit East Side Line, Interborough Rapid Transit West Side Line, Interborough Rapid Transit Grand Central/Times Square Shuttle, Interborough Rapid Transit Flushing Line, Bronx Interborough Rapid Transit – Woodlawn Line, Bronx Interborough Rapid Transit – Lennox/White Plains Rd. /Dyre Avenue Line, Bronx Interborough Rapid Transit – Pelham Line, and the Brooklyn Interborough Rapid Transit Line.

The BMT Lines offered in the New York Subway system include   Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Astoria Line,  Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Brighton Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Broadway Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Canarsie Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit Culver Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Jamaica Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Myrtle Avenue Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  Sea Beach Line, Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  West Side Line, and Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit  4th Avenue Line.

The IND Lines offered in the New York Subway system include Independent Subway System 6th Avenue Line, Independent Subway System 8th Avenue Line, Independent Subway System Concourse Line, Independent Subway System Cross town Line, Independent Subway System Fulton Line, Independent Subway System Queens Boulevard Line, Independent Subway System Rockaway Line, and Independent Subway System World’s Fair Spur.

Many New York City subway stations have mezzanines. The mezzanines allow the passengers to enter the subway station through several entrances and go to the right platform. The platform has a length of 500 – 600 feet.  There are many types of platforms including 2 track line, 3 track lines, and 4 track line. The 4 track line is equipped with an island platform.

New York Subway4 New York Subway


The New York City subway station has used a variety of cars including R142/R142A and the R62/R62A cars.


If you observe the subway trains, you will notice numbers and letters on them. The color code is used to group the trains into the main lines. It was developed to make the system less complicated to the public. However, the New Yorkers are more used to the letter and numbers signs.

Getting About with the New York City Subway with MetroCard

Passengers can walk down into the subway station and buy ticket at the booths. You can also purchase the ticket from the vending machines. The tickets are stored in the form of Metro Card. After obtaining the MetroCard, you must swipe it at the turnstile. Once you swipe the MetroCard, the turnstile will be unlocked so that you can pass through and proceed to the platform. In the outer boroughs, the subway lines are equipped with elevated tracks. The elevated tracks allow passengers to climb up without effort.

Subway NYC

Most New York City subway stations have globe lamp posts. The globe lamp posts indicated the availability of the station before the MetroCard emerged in 1994. The globe lamp would be green in color if the station is open for 24 hours per day. If the globe lamp is emitting yellow light, it means that the station is open during the daytime. If the lamp post is emitting red light, it means that the station s used as an exit station. Exit subway stations do not offer transportation services. Nowadays, the color indicates different meaning. Today, the green lamps indicate 24 hour entrances. The red lamps mean that the station is a non 24 hour entrance.

Contact Details:

Address: 370 Jay St, Brooklyn, NY 11201 United States

Phone Numbers: (718) 330-1234, (718) 330-3322

[google-map-sc external_links="true" zoom="16" address=" 370 Jay St, Brooklyn, NY 11201 United States" width="500" height="300"]

Related NY Attractions:

  1. New York Transit Museum
  2. New York Grand Central Terminal

Filed Under: Transportation


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