Grand Street and Grand Avenue
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Grand Street and Grand Avenue are the respective names of a street which runs through the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens, New York City, United States. Originating in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Grand Street runs roughly northeast until crossing Newtown Creek into Queens, whereupon Grand Street becomes Grand Avenue, continuing through Maspeth where it is a main shopping street, until reaching its northern end at Queens Boulevard, Elmhurst. Broadway continues the thoroughfare north and west of Queens Boulevard before it terminates in Astoria. Grand Avenue and Grand Street is served by the Q54, Q58 and Q59 buses, all operated by MTA New York City Bus. Broadway is served by the Q53 Limited and Q104 buses, both operated by MTA Bus. The Grand Street (L train) subway station serves the corner of Grand Street and Bushwick Avenue, while the Grand Avenue – Newtown (E M R trains) subway station is located at Grand Avenue and Queens Boulevard. The IND Queens Boulevard Line continues from the Grand Avenue-Newtown station up Broadway until the Steinway Street station. The Broadway (N Q trains) subway station is located at Broadway and 31st Street.
When Williamsburg was an independent town (and, later, city), Grand Street was its first main east-west commercial street which acted as a dividing line between the Northside of town and the Southside of town. Street numbering originated here with North 1st Street, North 2nd Street (now Metropolitan Avenue) and so on running parallel to Grand to the north and South 1st Street, South 2nd Street and so on progressing to the south. Its initial segments from the East River were first named Washington Street and then Dunham Street. It was extended to the southeast to Roebling Street in 1812 and to the then village line between Rodney and Keap Streets in 1830. Soon after, the street was extended to Union Avenue in the new third ward of Williamsburg and bent on an angle to the east in order to pass through the property of several prominent land owners. Grand Street was opened from Bushwick Avenue to Metropolitan Avenue in 1858.
In the 19th century, before the construction of the Williamsburg Bridge, the Grand Street Ferry connected Grand Street, Brooklyn to Grand Street, Manhattan. The Grand Street Line was a streetcar line along the road. Two Long Island Rail Road stations existed along the street in both boroughs. Grand Street (LIRR Evergreen station) along the Evergreen Branch near Willamsburg from 1868 to 1885, and Grand Street (LIRR Main Line station), a station in Elmhurst along Main Line that also served the Rockaway Beach Branch from 1913 to 1925.
At some point between the construction of the Williamsburg Bridge and 1913 (it appears on a 1913 map of Brooklyn), Grand Street was connected to the bridge plaza from the elbow bend near Union Avenue by the Grand Street Extension (now named Borinquen Place) and this became the main flow for car traffic. In 1950, Grand Street was severed by the BQE between Marcy Avenue and Rodney Street.
The street is referenced in songs and books from many local artists, including Bob Dylan ("Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again"), Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan ("I Don't Wanna Grow Up", popularized by the Ramones) and Matt & Kim (the title of their album Grand, as well as in the lyrics of their songs "Cameras" and "Daylight").
- Brooklyn Genealogy. http://www.bklyn-genealogy-info.com/Town/Eastern/G.html
- Brooklyn Genealogy. http://www.bklyn-genealogy-info.com/Map/Maps.Main.html