14th Street Crosstown Line (surface)

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The 14th Street Crosstown Line is a public transit line in Manhattan, New York City, United States, running mostly along 14th Street from Chelsea to the Lower East Side. Originally a streetcar line, it is now the M14 bus route, operated by the New York City Transit Authority. The line's two variants, the M14A and M14D, use Avenue A and Avenue D respectively from 14th Street south into the Lower East Side.

History[edit]

The tracks were built by several companies and pieced together by the Metropolitan Street Railway by 1899. The Bleecker Street and Fulton Ferry Railroad built the 14th Street tracks west of 9th Avenue, the Central Crosstown Railroad built from 9th Avenue to Union Square, and the Forty-Second Street and Grand Street Ferry Railroad built from Union Square to Avenue A and south on Avenue A. The Metropolitan Crosstown built a short connection at Union Square to connect the two halves, and tracks north on 11th Avenue to the West 23rd Street Ferry.

When the Williamsburg Bridge opened in 1904, 14th Street cars were rerouted to use the bridge (running east on Delancey Street from the one-way pair of Clinton Street northbound and Essex Street southbound), running as the 14th Street-Williamsburg Bridge Line until 1911. Buses were substituted for streetcars by the New York City Omnibus Corporation on April 20, 1936. That company changed its name to Fifth Avenue Coach Lines in 1956; the Manhattan and Bronx Surface Transit Operating Authority took over operations in 1962.

The route was once operated by the now defunct Hudson Pier Depot and was known only as the M14. When the depot was taken over by the Quill depot, it was separated into three lines, the M14A, M14C and M14D. After the 9/11 attacks, 14th street was blocked off in front of ConEd between Avenue C and Avenue D, forcing the M14D to run the M14C route, eventually it was decided since the route ran primarily on Avenue D the route would be renamed M14D. In 2004 until 2006, the M14C briefly returned running down Avenue C to Houston Street then turning East towards Avenue D/Columbia Street and resuming the normal route. This new route began running late and caused confusion with the M21 on Avenue C and eventually service returned to its current state as the M14A and M14D.

References[edit]