Grand Street Line (Brooklyn)

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The Grand Street Line is a public transit line in Brooklyn and Queens, New York City, United States, running mostly along Grand Street/Grand Avenue between Williamsburg, Brooklyn and Maspeth, Queens. Originally a streetcar line, it is now the Q59 bus route, operated by the New York City Transit Authority; the Q59 now continues east from Maspeth along Grand Avenue (with the Q58 Flushing–Ridgewood Line) and southeast on Queens Boulevard to Rego Park.


The Grand Street and Newtown Rail Road began building the line in September 1860,[1] and opened the first section, from the Grand Street Ferry on the Williamsburg waterfront to Bushwick Avenue, on October 15, 1860,[2] with a formal opening on October 30. In addition to the Grand Street Ferry, cars soon also served the Broadway Ferry via the track of the Brooklyn City Rail Road's Greenpoint Line on Kent Avenue.[3] By 1865, the line had been extended from Grand Street north along Bushwick Avenue, Humboldt Street, and Meeker Avenue to Penny Bridge.[4] The tracks in Bushwick Avenue were removed after trains started using Humboldt Street instead between Grand Street and Maspeth Avenue on July 19, 1870.[5]

The main line was extended east from Grand and Humboldt Streets over the new extension of Grand Street, opening to the city line (Newtown Creek) on June 9, 1875[6] and to Newtown on August 1, 1876.[7][8] The old line to Penny Bridge became the Meeker Avenue Line.

When the Maspeth Depot opened in 1885, the service was truncated to Maspeth; service from Maspeth to Elmhurst became a shuttle. (Later it became part of the Flushing–Ridgewood Line.) The Brooklyn City Rail Road leased the Grand Street and Newtown on May 1, 1890.[9][10] Buses were substituted for streetcars on December 11, 1949. At some point, the bus route was extended back east to Elmhurst and southeast on Queens Boulevard to Rego Park.


  1. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Began at Last, September 4, 1860, page 3
  2. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Completion of the Grand Street Rail Road, October 16, 1860, page 3
  3. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, The Grand Street Railroad, October 31, 1860, page 3
  4. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Particulars About Our City Rail Roads, August 10, 1865, page 2
  5. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Change in the Grand Street Railroad Route, July 19, 1870, page 2
  6. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, June 9, 1875, page 4
  7. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, The Grand Street Railroad, August 1, 1876, page 4
  8. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Grand Street Railroad, August 2, 1876, page 4
  9. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Ratified the Lease, April 28, 1890, page 6
  10. ^ Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Takes Possession of the New Lines, May 1, 1890, page 6

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