Hopefully you caught yesterday’s story, “Rochester’s Adventure in Optimism” about the defunct Rochester subway. If you missed it give it a read. Originally published in the City Newspaper in 1983, the article mentioned the sole surviving subway car, car #60, and the effort to bring it back to Rochester and restore it to working order. Yesterday I received a more detailed explanation of those restoration efforts from Otto M. Vondrak, one of the trustees of the Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum in Henrietta, NY. Here’s the story of subway car #60 from Otto…
Archive: ‘Rochester Subway’...
Tags: City Newspaper, history of Rochester, Jim Dierks, National Railway Historical Society (NRHS), New York Museum of Transportation, New York State Museum, NYMT, Otto M. Vondrak, Rail City, Rochester, Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, Rochester City Newspaper, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester subway car 60, Rochester Subway photos, Rochester Subway tunnel, Sam Grover
Posted in Rochester Destinations, Rochester History, Rochester News, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 2 Comments »
Sean Kirst began his career as a writer for City Newspaper (he’s now a columnist at Syracuse’s Post Standard ). He says he fell in love with the haunting feel of Rochester’s subway tunnels and was intrigued to learn the subway began taking off just after World War II. But at a critical moment, the system was basically dismantled by community leaders who were already thinking “interstates.” Sean dug into the story and wrote a fairly in-depth story entitled “Rochester’s Adventure in Optimism.” It was published in City Newspaper on June 2, 1983. Thirty years later, City Newspaper has graciously allowed RocSubway to share the story with you again, here…
Tags: City Newspaper, Harold McFarlin, history of Rochester, Jim Dierks, John Thomas, Mary Anna Towler, Mike Dow, National Railway Historical Society (NRHS), New York Museum of Transportation, NYMT, Richard Sale, Rochester, Rochester & Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, Rochester City Newspaper, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester subway car 60, Rochester Subway photos, Rochester Subway tunnel, Sean Kirst
Posted in Reader Submitted Stories, Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories, Transit + Infrastructure, Urban Development | 7 Comments »
A new web site, SaveCataract.com , and a mountain of information on Rochester’s endangered Cataract Brewery building has surfaced this week… The accomplished life (and death) of its architect… Original architectural drawings… And new documents submitted by North American Breweries to the Zoning Board (see the section called Offers to Buy Cataract). Ready? Let’s dive right in…
Tags: A.C. Wagner, American Brewing Company, Anheuser-Busch, architecture, Bavarian Brewing Company, brewery architect, Cataract Brewery, Genesee Brewery, Genesee Brewing Company, High Falls, Highland Brewery, Joel Helfrich, Kalmback and Geisel, KPS Capital Partners, Liberty Brewing Company, Merchants Ice Company, New England Brewery, New England Fruit Company, North American Breweries, Rich Wagner, Rochester NY, Standard Brewing Company, Steigmaier Brewery
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester Subway | 19 Comments »
Last Halloween I posted a ghastly warning about the abandoned Rochester subway tunnel. That warning was sent to us by a reader who claimed he knew people who once lived and died in the tunnel, and that he now feels a strong “spiritual pressure” whenever he returns there.
Jeffrey’s not the only one who feels these strange vibes from the subway tunnel. RochesterSubway.com often receives stories like these from people who claim to have been followed, or chased, out of the defunct subway. Though rarely do we get to see physical evidence of the ghoulish bouncer.
Last week Aaron Killeen sent in this mysterious photo (shown below) and gave a spine-tingling account of a night inside the Rochester subway, which he says he and his friends will not soon forget…
Tags: Aaron Killeen, abandoned tunnel, ghost subway, Halloween, haunted subway tunnel, Jeffrey Smith, paranormal, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway story, Rochester Subway tunnel, spirits, urban explorers
Posted in Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories | 4 Comments »
“And the sign said, The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls.” If Simon & Garfunkel are right, these photos could be considered divine. They were taken over the past 2 years by local photographer Lizz Comstock and shared with us today via RocSubway’s Facebook page.
It was abandoned by Rochester Transit Corporation over 55 years ago, but as debris piles up and messages are written on top of other messages, the walls of Rochester’s subway tunnel seem to echo with indelible voices. And these photos are wonderful illustrations of the life that can still be found beneath our streets.
Tags: abandoned subway tunnel, Facebook, Graffiti, Lizz Comstock, photography, Rochester, rochester images, Rochester NY, rochester photos, Rochester Subway photos, Rochester Transit Corporation
Posted in Rochester Images, Rochester Subway | 2 Comments »
As we look back on 55 years without our subway, the U.S. Highway System celebrates its 55th birthday. Coincidence?
Some old photos of Rochester’s lost subway after the jump…
Tags: history of Rochester, New York, old photos of Rochester, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway photos, Rochester Transit Corporation, this date in Rochester history
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff, Transit + Infrastructure | 7 Comments »
Every year the BBoy BBQ showcases some of the best graffiti crews anywhere in the world—right here in Rochester NY. Live graffiti art, live music, DJs, breakdancing artists, food, etc etc… all free and open to the public. This year rumors are swirling around the Rochester Subway that something big may be brewing…
Tags: BBoy BBQ, Facebook, FUA, Graffiti, Graffiti Convention, Rochester, Rochester NY
Posted in Art + Culture, Events, Rochester News, Rochester Subway | 5 Comments »
Two weeks ago the World Canals Conference took Rochester by storm and offered the public a glimpse inside the Broad Street Aqueduct Bridge and abandoned subway tunnel. Thousands attended and many tour-goers shared their great photos on our Facebook page . Did you miss all the fun? Well I’ve got good news for you. This Saturday, October 9th, you’ll have another chance to explore Rochester’s historic underbelly…
Tags: aqueduct, Broad Street, Erie Canal Aqueduct, Facebook, Genesee Aqueduct, photo, River Romance, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, subway tour, World Canal Conference
Posted in Events, Rochester News, Rochester Subway | 1 Comment »
Word of our Rochester Subway Facebook photo contest has gotten out. At least 20 photos have been uploaded to our Facebook wall since Sunday night and the votes/Likes are piling up. The photo with the most “Likes” by midnight Friday will win a Rochester Subway Poster modern or old-style. All of these photos are outstanding—only one will be crowned. So if you haven’t voted for one (or all of them) yet… hop on over to the RocSubway Facebook page and give that little “Like” button a workout. Or upload your own photo. Here’s a look at the front runners…
Tags: aqueduct, contest, Facebook, free stuff, Freebies, photo, photography, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, subway tour
Posted in Events, Freebies, Rochester Subway | 1 Comment »
I’m raising the stakes on Sunday’s Subway/Aqueduct Tour. Bring your camera with you on the tour, upload your best photo to the RocSubway Facebook page, and campaign for the most votes. You could WIN a Free Rochester Subway map…
Tags: aqueduct, contest, Facebook, free stuff, Freebies, photo, photography, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, subway tour, World Canal Conference
Posted in Events, Freebies, Rochester Subway | 7 Comments »
Jim Hall, age 62, of Farmington NY, recently stumbled upon RochesterSubway.com and was immediately taken for a ride down memory lane. So much so that he decided to share with us a few of his fondest memories of the Rochester Subway—his final ride on the very last day of service, and of his grandfather who was a streetcar conductor during the Great Blizzard of 1900! Jim says he and his two older sisters were brought up with a healthy fear of the subway because he was told of a tragic story where a ‘boy lost both legs’ being a bit too close to the tracks. As Jim points out, “it seems strange these days that memories stick with you.” But they certainly do. And the fun part is, we never know which ones will stand out in our mind a half century from now. Here’s Jim’s subway story…
Tags: B&O Railroad, Badge #834, Car #401, Curlew Street, Jim Hall, Lexington Avenue, old photos of Rochester, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway
Posted in Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories | 34 Comments »
After our subway excursion was squashed last Spring, many of our readers feared that they had missed their last chance to see the inside of the Rochester subway tunnel with their own eyes (and smell it with their own quivering noses). But this Summer the stars have aligned. Here come not one, not two, but THREE rare opportunities to go inside Rochester’s seldom seen subway… legally!
Oh, and did I mention, a lucky few* will get to enjoy cocktails and a catered dinner party INSIDE the tunnel? Yummy! Okay, here we go… these may be your final chances to experience the Rochester subway tunnel…
Tags: Anderson Alley, BBoy BBQ, Broad Street, Clifford Street, Dinner in the Ditch, Erie Canal, Erie Canal Aqueduct, FUA, Genesee Aqueduct, Graffiti, Graffiti Convention, Legal Wall, New York, Rick Rivers, Rochester, Rochester Canal District Plan, Rochester Contemporary Art Center, Rochester NY, Rochester's Historic Canal District, South Avenue, St. Joseph's Neighborhood Center, subway tour, The Rivers Organization, World Canal Conference
Posted in Events, Rochester News, Rochester Subway | 2 Comments »
On this day, June 30, 1956 in Rochester history…
Service on the Rochester Industrial and Rapid Transit Railway (the “subway”) ended. According to several accounts, the public came out in force to bid farewell to the Rochester subway and an extra car had to be added to handle the crowds. Fifty members of the Metropolitan New York Railway Association held a chartered fantrip, and people crowded platforms and overhead bridges all along the subway route to get their last pictures…
Tags: Canal Boats, General Motors, history of Rochester, Interurbans & Trolleys, New York, NRHS, old photos of Rochester, Rochester, Rochester history, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway photos, Rochester Transit Corporation, Rowlands Loop, this date in Rochester history
Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images, Rochester Subway, Train/Railroad Stuff | 2 Comments »
Back in January I stumbled upon a Flickr photo collection full of urban exploration photos from all around the Great Lakes and several “rust belt” cities… with several shots from Rochester and the abandoned subway tunnel. Shot after shot revealed some pretty unique views of Rochester’s underground world plus other amazing abandoned structures. As it happens, the owner of these wonderfully gritty photo streams is Chris Luckhardt, organizer of the Toronto Exploration Society. Chris is also the creative force behind Motionblur Studios —a low budget, high quality studio located west of Toronto.
Originally from Stratford, Ontario, Chris Luckhardt’s creative exploration has driven him from New Foundland to Pheonix in search of forgotten places—strangely spiritual, places we’re not ‘supposed’ to go. I contacted Chris to find out a little more about these photos and what enticed him to visit the bowels of downtown Rochester…
ROCHESTERSUBWAY.COM: Hi Chris, I noticed you have a couple of nice shots of the abandoned Rochester Subway. How often do you visit the subway tunnel? Can you tell me a bit about yourself and your photos?
CHRIS: Sure, thanks for the feedback! I’m the organizer for the Toronto Exploration Society . The group, founded in February 2005, specializes in urban exploration (mostly around the Great Lakes region) and photo walks (mostly in Toronto). I’m currently west of Toronto in Cambridge, Ontario. Rochester was the first US city I visited strictly for urban exploration. I have lots of photos and video from inside the [Rochester] subway. I’ve been down there 5 times in the past 4 years, the last time being a couple of months ago. I also have lots of SD and HD video, but I haven’t processed anything yet.
Tags: abandoned subway, abandoned subway tunnel, abandoned tunnel, Canada, Canon, Chris Luckhardt, Cleveland, Cleveland subway, Detroit, Dinosaur Bar B Que, Flickr, Lee Plaza, Manchester NY, Michigan Central Station, Motionblur Studios, New Foundland, Phoenix, photo, photography, Photomatix, Photoshop, Rochester, Rochester Historical Society, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, Toronto, Toronto Exploration Society, Trotting Park, urban exploration, urban explorers
Posted in Art + Culture, Interviews, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway Stories | 2 Comments »
Today’s Easter Sunday edition of the Democrat and Chronicle featured fairly extensive coverage of the Broad Street Improvement Project and future plans for the subway tunnel. Three articles and a short video dominated the print and online versions of the Local section and gave RochesterSubway.com and ReconnectRochester.org some much appreciated press. The story below is from the D&C and includes comments from myself (Mike Governale of RochesterSubway.com) and Tom Grasso, who’s canal rewatering plan will likely wash away any chance of ever using the old subway tunnel as a rail corridor again…
Tags: abandoned subway tunnel, Brian Sharp, Broad Street, Broad Street Tunnel Improvement Project, Democrat & Chronicle, Democrat and Chronicle, New York, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, subway, Tom Grasso
Posted in Rochester News, Rochester Subway | No Comments »
The story of the Rochester Subway is not complete without at least mentioning Rochester’s deep-rooted hip hop culture. If you’re less than familiar with Rochester, I assure you, this shizzle is fo’ real. The “Flower City” has street cred, and our abandoned subway tunnel has long been used as a canvas to show off some of our best underground talent…
Tags: abandoned subway tunnel, art, artist, Beyond Gotham, Cab Calloway, Carlos Perez, Chuck Mangione, Clifford Avenue, Day26, Dejilon Studios, Eastman School of Music, Evak FUA, Famous Urban Artists, Flower City, From Up Above, FUA, Garth Fagan, Ginuwine, Giovanni McClain, Graffiti, Graffiti Convention, hip hop, Jodeci, Juse One, Making the Band, Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, New York, North Clinton Avenue, P-Diddy, Que Mosley, rapper, Rochester, Rochester NY, Tim "Timbaland" Mosley, Tupac Shakur
Posted in Art + Culture, Interviews, Rochester News, Rochester Subway, Video | 8 Comments »
A few months ago two of my readers (I’ll call them Tim and Jeff) contacted me to find out if RochesterSubway.com gave tours of the abandoned subway tunnel. I explained that while I wasn’t in the business of giving tours, I would be happy to go down there with them when the weather warmed up. Tim and Jeff were both on board and I soon posted an “event” on the RochesterSubway.com Facebook page to invite others to join us—cause “safety in numbers” is my credo. Anyway, I figured I’d get 3-6 people to come along and it’d be a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
Soon enough that little Facebook event had attracted 43 Yes’s and 55 “Maybe’s”. Oh shit!
Tags: abandoned subway tunnel, Christine, Facebook, New York, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Police Department, Rochester Subway, Rochester Subway tunnel, RPD
Posted in Events, Rochester News, Rochester Subway | 14 Comments »
It’s been widely reported that RochesterSubway.com is spending millions on a new Super Bowl TV spot this year featuring rapper and hip hop megastar 50 Cent. We’re not going to rain on the parade—maybe the ad will air during the Super Bowl, maybe it won’t. You’ll have to watch the game to find out. But you won’t have to wait to see it. Watch the spot… then read the rest of this post to find out how we got 50 to star in our Rochester Subway production…
Tags: 50 Cent, ad, Facebook, hip hop, rapper, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester Subway, rochestersubway.com, Super Bowl, superbowl, urban
Posted in Art + Culture, Rochester Subway, Video | 4 Comments »