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Beach Pneumatic Transit

POI: 40.713320, -74.007010
The Beach Pneumatic Transit was the first attempt to build an underground public transit system in New York City. It was developed by Alfred Ely Beach in 1869 as a demonstration subway line running on pneumatic power. As the subway line had one stop and a one-car shuttle going back and forth, it was merely a novelty and not a regular mode of transport. It lasted from 1870 until 1873.
History
Alfred Ely Beach demonstrated a model of basic pneumatic subway system, in which air pressure in the tube pushed the cars, at the American Institute Exhibition in New York in 1867. After demonstrating that the model was viable, in 1869 Beach and his Beach Pneumatic Transit Company began constructing a pneumatically-powered subway line beneath Broadway. Funneled through a company he set up, Beach put up $350,000 of his own money to bankroll the full-scale test project. Built with a tunneling shield, the tunnel was complete in only 58 days. Its single tunnel, 312 feet (95 m) long, 8 feet (2.4 m) in diameter, was completed in 1870 and ran under Broadway from Warren Street to Murray Street. However, one of the city's top politicians of the day, William "Boss" Tweed, would not support such a project. With no initial political support for the project, Beach started the project by claiming he was building postal tubes. The initial permit was to install a pair of smaller postal tubes below Broadway; however, Tweed later amended the permit to allow the excavation of a single large tunnel wherein the smaller tubes could reside. The exact location of the tubes was determined during construction by compass and survey as well as verified by driving jointed rods of iron up through the roof of the tunnel to the pavement. The line was built as a demonstration of a pneumatic transit system, open to the public with a 25-cent fare per person. Proceeds for the admission went to the Union Home and School for Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans. It was planned to run about 5 miles (8.0 km) in total, to Central Park, if it were ever completed. For the public, the project was basically an attraction. It ran only a single car on its one-block-long track to a dead-end at its terminus, and passengers would simply ride out and back, to see what the proposed subway might be like. During its first two weeks of operation, the Beach Pneumatic Transit sold over 11,000 rides, and over 400,000 total rides in its single year of operation. Although the public showed initial approval, Beach was delayed in getting permission to expand it due to official obstruction for various reasons. By the time he finally gained permission in 1873, public and financial support had waned, and the subway was closed down within the year. The project was shut down when a stock market crash caused investors to withdraw support. It is unclear that such a system could have been practical for a large-scale subway network. After the project was shut down, the tunnel entrance was sealed and the station, built in part of...   ... (English)
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by Panoramio
022 New York, Skyline Manhattan
022 New York, Skyline Manhattan
Daniel Meyer
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030 New York, City Hall Park, City Hall, Municipal Building
030 New York, City Hall Park, City Hall, Municipal Building
Daniel Meyer
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 un tributo a los miles de emigrantes del mundo que hicieron de New York una gran ciudad video:     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSLn_oZOiBU
un tributo a los miles de emigrantes del mundo que hicieron de New York una gran ciudad video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSLn_oZOiBU
ramtto
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ASOMADO AL ROCKEFELLER / OVERLOOKING THE ROCKEFELLER
ASOMADO AL ROCKEFELLER / OVERLOOKING THE ROCKEFELLER
anaberdi
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ROCKEFELLER CENTER
ROCKEFELLER CENTER
anaberdi
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Court Building
Court Building
Jeff T. Alu
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Haute Normandie
Haute Normandie
Olivier Faugeras
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