The New York City Subway is a rapid transit system that serves four of the five boroughs of New York City, New York: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Its operator is the New York City Transit Authority (NYCTA), which is controlled by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) of New York. In 2016, an average of 5.66 million passengers used the system daily, making it the busiest rapid transit system in the United States and the seventh busiest in the world.

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  • The New York City Subway is a rapid transit system that serves four of the five boroughs of New York City, New York: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Its operator is the New York City Transit Authority (NYCTA), which is controlled by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) of New York. In 2016, an average of 5.66 million passengers used the system daily, making it the busiest rapid transit system in the United States and the seventh busiest in the world. The first underground line opened on October 27, 1904, almost 35 years after the opening of the first elevated line in New York City, which became the IRT Ninth Avenue Line. By the time the first subway opened, the lines had been consolidated into two privately owned systems, the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Company (BRT, later Brooklyn–Manhattan Transit Corporation, BMT) and the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT). After 1913, all lines built for the IRT and most lines for the BRT were built by the city and leased to the companies. The first line of the city-owned and operated Independent Subway System (IND) opened in 1932; this system was intended to compete with the private systems and allow some of the elevated railways to be torn down. However, it was kept within the core of the city because of the low amount of startup capital provided to the municipal Board of Transportation by the state. This required it to be run "at cost", necessitating fares up to double the five-cent fare popular at the time. In 1940, the city took over running the previously privately operated systems. Some elevated lines closed immediately while others closed soon after. Integration was slow, but several connections were built between the IND and BMT, which now operate as one division called the B Division. Since IRT infrastructure is too small for B Division cars, the IRT remains its own division, the A Division. The NYCTA, a public authority presided over by New York City, was created in 1953 to take over subway, bus, and streetcar operations from the city. The NYCTA was under control of the state-level MTA in 1968. Soon after the MTA took control of the subway, New York City entered a fiscal crisis. It closed many elevated subway lines that became too expensive to maintain. Graffiti and crime became common, and equipment and stations fell into decrepit condition. The New York City Subway tried to stay solvent, so it had to make many service cutbacks and defer necessary maintenance projects. In the 1980s an $18 billion financing program for the rehabilitation of the subway began. The September 11 attacks resulted in service disruptions, particularly on the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line, which ran directly underneath the World Trade Center. Sections of the tunnel, as well as the Cortlandt Street station, which was directly underneath the Twin Towers, were severely damaged and had to be rebuilt, requiring suspension of service on that line south of Chambers Street. Ten other nearby stations were temporarily closed. By March 2002, seven of those stations had reopened. The rest (except for Cortlandt Street on the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line) reopened on September 15, 2002, along with service south of Chambers Street. Since the 2000s, expansions include the 7 Subway Extension that opened in September 2015, and the Second Avenue Subway, the first phase of which opened on January 1, 2017. However, at the same time, under-investment in the subway system led to a transit crisis that peaked in 2017. (en)
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  • The New York City Subway is a rapid transit system that serves four of the five boroughs of New York City, New York: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Its operator is the New York City Transit Authority (NYCTA), which is controlled by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) of New York. In 2016, an average of 5.66 million passengers used the system daily, making it the busiest rapid transit system in the United States and the seventh busiest in the world. (en)
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  • History of the New York City Subway (en)
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