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The Sixth Avenue Line is a rapid transit line of the IND division of the New York City Subway system, running mostly under Sixth Avenue in Manhattan. Opened to service in 1940, it was the last IND trunk line to open.

Extent and serviceEdit

Services that use the Sixth Avenue Line through Midtown and Downtown Manhattan are colored orange on station signs, the NYC Subway Map and train front and/or side route signs depending on the equipment used.

The following services use part or all of the Sixth Avenue Line:

Service Section of line
B express (morning rush hour through early evening) south of 59th Street–Columbus Circle to the Manhattan Bridge
D express
F Local 57th Street to Jay Street–Borough Hall
Section of line Tracks Services
57th Street to 47th-50th Streets–Rockefeller Center all F at all times
59th Street-Columbus Circle to 47th-50th Streets all B morning rush hour through early evening, D always
47th-50th Streets-Rockefeller Center to Broadway–Lafayette Street local F always, M weekdays
express B morning rush hour through early evening, D always
Broadway–Lafayette Street to the Manhattan Bridge all B morning rush hour through early evening, D always
Broadway–Lafayette Street to Second Avenue all F always
south of Second Avenue all F always

The Sixth Avenue Line can be considered as having two north ends. One is at 57th Street station, where two tracks lead south under Sixth Avenue from the IND 63rd Street Line. The other is just south of 59th Street–Columbus Circle, where a two-track line splits from the IND Eighth Avenue Line at a flying junction (with connections to the local and express tracks), immediately turns east under 53rd Street, and crosses the IND Queens Boulevard Line, which parallels it just to the north. At the Seventh Avenue station, the southbound track is above the northbound track; the same is true on the Queens Boulevard Line (though north is the opposite direction from the Sixth Avenue Line). This line then turns south to go under Sixth Avenue, merging with the branch from 57th Street and a connection to the IND Queens Boulevard Line to become a four-track line. The southbound track becomes the westernmost track, and the northbound track becomes the second track from the east; the other lines merge to become the second track from the west and the easternmost track, with connections only between the 63rd Street Line and the two main tracks. After passing through 47th-50th Streets-Rockefeller Center, the two southbound tracks cross; the main tracks have become two center express tracks and the tracks from the other lines are the two outside local tracks.

South of 42nd Street is a large interlocking with many crossover tracks. The original express tracks ended just to the south at 34th Street-Herald Square, and some services switched to the local tracks at the interlocking. This was done because the PATH subway already existed under Sixth Avenue south of 33rd Street; the Sixth Avenue Line local tracks were built on each side of PATH. Deeper express tracks were later built and opened for service in 1968. The Section between W 4 St. and 34 St-Herald Square was originally built as a two track subway with the provision to expand to four tracks later (the express tracks were added in the 1960s during the Chrystie Street Connection projects—as a result they are placed under the local tracks and PATH, which is in the space in which they could have been). The section at 34 St-Herald Square in the heart of Midtown Manhattan was and probably still is the most complicated piece of subway construction ever attempted. When this station was built, several rail lines, streets, utilities and water lines had to be supported or avoided. The 34 St. Station has extreme grades at either end because of the construction and overlaying structures.

At West Fourth Street-Washington Square, the express tracks return to the same level as the local tracks. A flying junction just to the south connects the local tracks of the Eighth Avenue Line. The Sixth Avenue Line then turns east under Houston Street. After Broadway-Lafayette Street, the express tracks turn south to become the Chrystie Street Connection main tracks (to the Manhattan Bridge), and tracks split from the local tracks to become the other part of the connection (to the Williamsburg Bridge).

Just south (compass east) of the connection, the express tracks begin again; they had formerly gone straight through. The express tracks end past Lower East Side-Second Avenue, and are used to relay V trains; they were once planned to extend east towards the Rockaways as part of the IND Second System.

The local tracks then turn south under Essex Street and Rutgers Street before crossing under the East River via the Rutgers Street Tunnel to become the IND Culver Line.

HistoryEdit

The local tracks on the main part of the line opened at 00:01 on December 15, 1940. The following service changes were made:

Template:Sectstub


  • IRT Sixth Av. Rapid Transit Elevated Structure. (Demolished 1938)
  • Intersection Of Broadway, Sixth Av, and 34 St. (including street car tracks—removed later)
  • Underground Utilities including water pipes and mains, gas and electric lines
  • PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson(Subway))
  • BMT Broadway Subway
  • IND Sixth Av. Subway
  • Pennsylvania Rail Tunnels-To Queens and Pennsylvania (Penn) Station
  • Sixth Av. Aqueduct, New York's main water supply 200 ft (60 m) Deep

Leaving this complicated area of rail lines the line continues as a four track subway to 53 St. Here the line splits. Two tracks continue North to the new 63 St. Subway opened in 1988, two others continue west under 53 St. to meet with the 8 Av. Subway, while still two others travel east to merge with the 53 St. Subway and head to Queens.

This line was completed in 1940.

Station listingEdit

Station Tracks Services Opened Transfers and notes
Manhattan
Branch from the IND 63rd Street Line (F always)
57th Street local F always October 28, 1989
Branch from the IND Eighth Avenue Line (A always, C all but late nights)
Seventh Avenue express B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always
December 15, 1940 E (IND Queens Boulevard Line)
Merge with a connection from the IND Queens Boulevard Line (M rush hours, middays, and evenings)
Main line
47th-50th Streets–Rockefeller Center all B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always,
F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940
42nd Street–Bryant Park all B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always,
F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940 7 <7> 

  (IRT Flushing Line)

34th Street–Herald Square all B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always,
F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940 Template:NYCS N,Q & R(BMT Broadway Line),M34 & M34A Select Bus Service &
connection to PATH
23rd Street local F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940 connection to PATH
14th Street local F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940 L (BMT Canarsie Line)
connection to PATH
West Fourth Street–Washington Square all B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always,
F always,
M rush hours, middays, and evenings
December 15, 1940 A C 

  E (IND Eighth Avenue Line)

connecting tracks to the IND Eighth Avenue Line (no services switch)
Broadway–Lafayette Street all B morning rush hour through early evening,
D always,
F always,
Mrush hours, middays, and evenings
January 1, 1936 4

  6 <6>   (IRT Lexington Avenue Line) southbound only

Branch under Chrystie Street (B morning rush hour through early evening, D always)
Grand Street express B morning rush hour through early evening, D always November 27, 1967
To north tracks of Manhattan Bridge
Branch under Houston Street (F always )
Second Avenue local
layup tracks
F always January 1, 1936 M15 Select Bus Service
Delancey Street local F always January 1, 1936 J M

  Z   (BMT Nassau Street Line)

East Broadway local F always January 1, 1936
Rutgers Street Tunnel under the East River
Brooklyn
York Street local F always April 9, 1936
Jay Street–MetroTech local F always February 11, 1933 R & cross-platform transfer to A C

 

merges with IND Crosstown Line and continues as the IND Culver Line

External linksEdit

ReferencesEdit

  • 6th Ave. Tube Adds Two New Services, New York Times December 5, 1940 page 27


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New York City Subway Lines
IRT Manhattan: 42nd St ShuttleBroadway-7th AvLenox AvLexington Av
Bronx: Dyre AvJerome AvPelhamWhite Plains Rd
Brooklyn/Queens: Eastern PkwyFlushingNostrand Av
Former: 2nd Av3rd Av6th Av9th Av
BMT Manhattan trunks and branches: 63rd StAstoriaBroadwayManhattan BridgeNassau St
Eastern Division: Archer AvCanarsieJamaicaMyrtle Av
Southern Division: 4th AvBrightonCulverFranklin AvSea BeachWest End
Former: 3rd Av5th AvBrooklyn BridgeFulton StLexington Av
IND Manhattan/Bronx trunks: 6th Av8th AvConcourse
Brooklyn/Queens: 63rd StArcher AvCrosstownCulverFulton StRockawayQueens Blvd
Former: World's Fair
Connections Chrystie St60th St
Future 2nd Av


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MTA: New York City Subway
Routes NYCS Route 1NYCS Route 2NYCS Route 3NYCS Route 4NYCS Route 5NYCS Route 6NYCS Route 6dNYCS Route 7NYCS Route 7dNYCS Route ANYCS Route BNYCS Route CNYCS Route DNYCS Route ENYCS Route FNYCS Route GNYCS Route JNYCS Route LNYCS Route MNYCS Route NNYCS Route QNYCS Route RNYCS Route Z
Shuttles NYCS Route S (42nd StreetFranklin AvenueRockaway Park)
Defunct NYCS 89HKTVWJFK Express
BMT 12345678910111213141516Brooklyn Loops
Shuttles 63rd StreetBowling GreenCulverGrand StreetOther
Unused 10 • 11 • 12 • 13 • P • U • X • Y
Expansion Second Avenue Subway7 Subway ExtensionFulton Street Transit Center
Divisions A Division: IRTB Division: BMTIND (Second System)
Lists Inter-division connectionsInter-division transfersLinesServicesStationsTerminalsYards
Miscellaneous AccessibilityChainingHistoryMetroCardNomenclatureRolling stock
Other NYC transit Rail: AirTrain JFKAmtrakLIRRMetro-NorthNJT (rail)PATHStaten Island Railway
Other: NJT (buses)NYCT busesRoosevelt Island Tramway

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