park_avenue_tunnel-manhattan-1899-nyc-untapped_citiesPhoto taken circa 1899 by someone unknown

Today the Park Avenue Tunnel, running between 33rd and 40th Streets is a passage for cars, but before it was a roadway for motor vehicles, it was a train and trolley tunnel. Constructed in 1834, it was originally built for the New York & Harlem Railroad (NY&H) as an open cut, which ran steam engines as well as horsecars. In the 1850s, the open cut was bridged creating a tunnel to boost public safety by removing the train from Manhattan’s surface. The Park Avenue Tunnel became of the city’s oldest, accommodating trolley trucks and two-way traffic.  (more…)

Places to Find Nikola Tesla-Nikola Tesla Corner Bryant Park-NYCPhoto via Flickr/storm2k

July 10th, 2016 marked the 160th birthday of inventor, engineer and physicist, Nikola Tesla, regarded as one of the most important figures of the 19th and 20th centuries. In 1884, a 28-year-old Tesla was hired by Thomas Edison, and moved from his home country, Serbia, and would go on to live and work in New York City for 60 years. Tesla was credited with the advancement and creation of a number of important inventions, but unfortunately, others would often be credited for his work. Here is a list of the top 10 places to find Nikola Tesla in New York City.


9:11 Museum Art Exhibit-Tumbling Woman-Manhattan-NYCPhoto via the 9/11 Memorial Museum

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Some of the Untapped Cities core staff has been on their annual electricity-less, internet free vacation on remote islands in Brittany, France so we missed this video in our inbox. But we’re back and want to share this dramatic drone video of the always mysterious North Brother Island, the abandoned island in New York City’s East River. We’ve previously covered its historical secrets and shared photographs from photographer Christopher Payne, a collaborator of Untapped Cities, who wrote the book  North Brother Island, The Last Unknown Place in New York CityWe’ve even visited the island ourselves, on a surprise stop with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and are anxiously awaiting the study that’s exploring the opening of North Brother Island to public access.


Sharing Models Manhattanisms-Storefront for Art and Architecture-NYC

New York is a city where many people keep to themselves on daily basis. Yet living in the city provides New Yorkers with opportunities to share and cohabitate a lot of the same spaces. On Friday July 15, ‘Sharing Models: Manhattanisms‘ opened to the public at Storefront for Art and Architecture. At the exhibit, 30 architects from around the world presented a combination of real and fictionalized aspects of urban life which display how the concepts of sharing and interconnectedness shapes the present and future of New York City.


In 2012, we visited the first iteration of the Lowline – an exhibition in an Essex Street warehouse that showed the possibilities of the world’s first underground park that could be built in New York City in the abandoned Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal on the Lower East Side. A little less than four years later, city government has given the project official approval. The Lowline will not only bring an innovative new green space to the neighborhood but will also provide a “community-oriented public and cultural space,” the NYCEDC announced last week.