Conduit Avenue

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New York State Route 27 marker

Conduit Avenue
Route information
Maintained by NYCDOT
Length: 8.0 mi[1] (12.9 km)
Major junctions
West end: Atlantic Avenue in Cypress Hills
  NY 27 (Linden Boulevard) in Lindenwood
I-878 / Belt Parkway in South Ozone Park
I-678 in South Ozone Park
JFK Expressway in South Ozone Park
Belt Parkway in Laurelton
East end: NY 27 / Hook Creek Boulevard in Rosedale
Highway system

Conduit Avenue (Conduit Boulevard in Brooklyn) is an arterial road in New York City, the vast majority of which is in Queens. The divided highway runs from Atlantic Avenue in Cypress Hills, Brooklyn to Hook Creek Boulevard in Rosedale, Queens at the Nassau County border. The thoroughfare is named after an aqueduct in its right-of-way. Conduit Avenue and Conduit Boulevard were conceived in 1921 as part of the Conduit Highway, later the Sunrise Highway, with the original highway opening in 1929. The highway was expanded in 1940 as part of the construction of Belt Parkway.


Conduit Avenue and Conduit Boulevard are named for the conduit of the Brooklyn Water Works which fed Ridgewood Reservoir and were constructed on the former right-of-way of the aqueduct.[2][3] The conduit was known as the Ridgewood Aqueduct.[4]


West of Cross Bay Boulevard, Conduit Boulevard has a wide median strip and runs adjacent to a number of parks with playgrounds. It is one of the few divided roads in Brooklyn with a grass median and serves as the boundary between the neighborhoods of Cypress Hills and City Line in Brooklyn and Ozone Park and Lindenwood in Queens.[1] Between the Shore Parkway and the Laurelton Parkway, Conduit Avenue serves as the service road for Southern Parkway. East of Brookville Boulevard, South Conduit Avenue parallels the Montauk Branch of the Long Island Rail Road and continues as Sunrise Highway in Valley Stream. At 225th Street, North Conduit Avenue goes to the north to Hook Creek Boulevard, with the Sunrise Highway merging into it to the south.[1]

Conduit Avenue is designated as New York State Route 27 between Linden Boulevard and the Nassau County border and accommodates car, bus and truck traffic. Westbound vehicles use the roadway named North Conduit Avenue; eastbound vehicles use South Conduit Avenue.[1] At various times the road has been used as a drag strip, particularly in Rosedale.[5]

The western segment of the highway, between Atlantic Avenue and Cross Bay Boulevard, was originally slated to be the eastern part of a planned, but never built, Bushwick Expressway. That highway was proposed to run from the Williamsburg Bridge through Williamsburg, Bushwick and East New York before feeding into the Belt Parkway.[6][7][8]


The intersection of Conduit Boulevard and Sutter Avenue, on the Brooklyn side of the Brooklyn-Queens border.

The original Brooklyn Waterworks brick conduit stretched from Long Island to the Ridgewood Pumping Station, now the site of City Line Park, in East New York.[9][10][11] There, the water was pushed via a steam-powered pump north through a "force tube" into the Ridgewood Reservoir;[4][10][12] the route of this tube is now Force Tube Avenue.[13] The reservoir was opened in 1858, and the pumping station in 1886.[4][11] The aqueduct was located on the north side of what is now Conduit Avenue, and was built on a right-of-way yet to be developed.[4] When the City of Brooklyn was consolidated as a borough of New York City in 1898, New York City gained possession of the Brooklyn Waterworks' assets, including the reservoir and its 25-mile (40 km) long aqueduct stretching to Massapequa in Nassau County. At this time, the right-of-way was still largely undeveloped, with the conduits located underground.[9][3] Both Force Tube Avenue and Conduit Avenue were laid out and paved by the 1910s.[14][15]

Plans to construct a highway along the conduit path emerged around 1913.[16][17] In 1921, the New York State Legislature signed a bill to construct a highway along the right-of-way known as Conduit Highway, ending in Amityville. The route included both Conduit Avenue and the Sunrise Highway.[9][3] The original plans called for a grade-separated parkway,[16] but the route was later designed to be 30 feet (9.1 m) to 40 feet (12 m) wide.[7][9][3] The highway was planned to relieve congestion on Merrick Road/Merrick Boulevard.[2] Construction began on the highway in 1924[2] or 1925.[18] In conjunction with the project, what was then Linden Avenue was extended east from Kings Highway to Conduit Boulevard, becoming Linden Boulevard.[19] The highway was referred to by various names including Conduit Boulevard and Pipe Line Boulevard.[2] By 1928, the entire stretch from Brooklyn to Amityville was officially named the Sunrise Highway, following efforts by the Long Island Chamber of Commerce.[2] The label Conduit was deemed "an unattractive one and quite meaningless." The Sunrise Highway name, meanwhile, was reference to the nickname for Long Island, "Land of the Sunrise Trails".[20] The entire highway was opened on June 9, 1929. An inauguration ceremony was held at Liberty Avenue in Brooklyn.[21] In 1931, the city planned to extend Conduit Boulevard north to Jamaica Avenue along Force Tube Avenue, which would require condemning property along the avenue in order to widen it, but this never took place.[22]

The Southern Parkway in Springfield Gardens, built along the Conduit corridor.

In the early 1930s, it was proposed to convert the Conduit Boulevard route between Linden Boulevard and Laurelton Boulevard/Brookville Boulevard into a state parkway, with North and South Conduit Avenues created as service roads for the parkway. The purpose of the project was to create express highway links between Brooklyn and Long Island, via Linden Boulevard, Sunrise Highway, and the Southern State Parkway.[18][16][23] The original 1931 plans, known as the Southern State Parkway extension, called for an arterial road adjacent to the existing narrow Sunrise Highway.[24][25] Later plans called for a parkway.[16][23] As early as July 1934, land was acquired via eminent domain to widen Conduit Boulevard and build the new parkway.[7][16][23] The project would become the Southern Parkway section of the Belt Parkway, which would connect to the Belt system's Laurelton Parkway at Brookville Bouelvard and feed into the Southern State Parkway.[12][23][26][27][28] In justifying the conversion of the Conduit route into part of the Belt system, NYC Parks commissioner Robert Moses cited the "approximately 10,00,000 cars" traveling the route on an annual basis, and the need for a highway link between Brooklyn and Long Island to create "the ultimate cirumferential boulevard."[29]

North and South Conduit Avenue were constructed as service roads along with the Southern Parkway.[23] Shortly after the opening of the Belt Parkway system in 1940,[30] Conduit Boulevard west of the parkawy was expanded into a six-lane highway, with the right-of-way widened to create the grassy median. The project was completed around 1942, in conjunction with the widening of Atlantic Avenue and grade separation of the LIRR Atlantic Branch.[31][32][33]


  1. ^ a b c d Google (January 9, 2017). "Conduit Avenue" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved January 9, 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "SUNRISE HIGHWAY LONG ISLAND BOON; Provides Traffic and Realty Benefits for Queens and Nassau Counties". The New York Times. April 29, 1928. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c d "New Long Island Highway". The New York Times. July 17, 1921. Retrieved October 11, 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d Nassau Expressway Construction, New York City: Environmental Impact Statement. United States Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration, New York State Department of Transportation. 1981. Retrieved 28 February 2017. 
  5. ^ Herszenhorn, David M. (August 28, 1995). "Officers Arrest 18 and Seize Cars in Drag Racing Sting Operation in Queens". The New York Times. Retrieved October 11, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Bushwick Expressway, NYC,
  7. ^ a b c Marzlock, Ron (September 17, 2015). "Where the narrow old Conduit met Cross Bay Blvd.". Queens Chronicle. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  8. ^ Rafter, Domenick (March 27, 2014). "Howard Beach unsure about greenway plan". Queens Chronicle. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  9. ^ a b c d "Bringing the Center of Long Island an Hour Closer to New York: New Proposed Conduit Highway on City-Owned Property Would Relieve Congestion on South Shore Roads". Motor Travel. Automobile Club of America. 13 (1). April 1921. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  10. ^ a b Edwin G. Burrows; Mike Wallace (19 November 1998). Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898. Oxford University Press. p. 837. ISBN 978-0-19-972910-4. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  11. ^ a b "City Line Park: History". New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  12. ^ a b Sergey Kadinsky (7 March 2016). Hidden Waters of New York City: A History and Guide to 101 Forgotten Lakes, Ponds, Creeks, and Streams in the Five Boroughs. Countryman Press. p. 201. ISBN 978-1-58157-566-8. Retrieved 2 January 2017. 
  13. ^ Boland, Ed, Jr. (July 21, 2002). "F.Y.I.". The New York Times. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  14. ^ "Changing the Map or Plan of the City of New York by Laying Out Force Tube Avenue, From Jamaica Avenue to Dinsmore Place, Borough of Brooklyn". Minutes of the Board of Estimate and Apportionment of the City of New York. New York City Board of Estimate, M.B. Brown Printing & Binding Company: 2957. November 9, 1911. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  15. ^ "Local Improvements". Proceedings of the Board of Estimate and Apportionment of the City of New York. New York City Board of Estimate. 4: 3359–3360. June 9, 1916. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  16. ^ a b c d e "Plans Ready for Extension of Highway: Sunrise Development Will Be Considered on July 30" (PDF). Long Island Daily Press. July 21, 1934. p. 7. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  17. ^ "New Map Adopted: Marks Important Step in Queens Borough Development". The New York Times. June 1, 1913. Retrieved 10 March 2017. 
  18. ^ a b "5 New Factors Seen Boosting Sunrise Hwy: Increased Utility for Artery Predicted After Improvements" (PDF). Long Island Daily Press. May 22, 1932. p. 24. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  19. ^ Wilhem, Carl (November 2, 1924). "City Can Start on Conduit Boulevard in a Week, Says Riegelmann; $2,000,000 Linden Boulevard Link Awaits Shovels; Nassau Cash Ready, but City Holds Back". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. C1. Retrieved 27 February 2017. 
  20. ^ "Dobson Asks Civics Aid on Proposal" (PDF). Long Island Daily Press. March 10, 1928. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  21. ^ "LONG ISLAND OPENS SUNRISE HIGHWAY; 300 Motors Parade 26 Miles From Brooklyn to Amityville in Celebration.". The New York Times. June 9, 1929. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  22. ^ "Protests Local Levy Plan for Sunrise Link: Taxpayers Object to Full Condemnation Cost on Force Tube Avenue". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. March 3, 1931. p. 19. Retrieved 28 February 2017. 
  23. ^ a b c d e "Final Plans Drafted for New Parkway: Sunrise Highway Improvement to Take Several Years" (PDF). Long Island Daily Press. January 25, 1937. p. 5. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  24. ^ "Two Road Plans Are Approved: State and City Would Join in Long Island Scheme" (PDF). The Sun (New York). September 17, 1931. p. 12. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  25. ^ "URGES EXTENSION OF 2 QUEENS DRIVES". The New York Times. September 16, 1931. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  26. ^ "Work is Started on Parkway Span" (PDF). The Nassau Daily Review. April 29, 1935. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  27. ^ Ritchie, George (December 7, 1937). "Moses Plans Parkways Into Heart of City; Proposal Would Link Up Huge Westchester and Long Island Systems" (PDF). The Sun (New York). pp. 1, 17. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  28. ^ Ritchie, George (December 7, 1937). "Moses Plans Parkways Into Heart of City; Proposal Would Link Up Huge Westchester and Long Island Systems" (PDF). The Sun (New York). pp. 1, 17. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  29. ^ "Traffic Arteries to Cost $7,880,000". The New York Times. February 19, 1938. Retrieved 3 March 2017. 
  30. ^ "Belt Road To Open to Traffic Today". The New York Times. June 29, 1940. p. 12. 
  31. ^ "MOSES ASKS FUNDS FOR BELT ROAD LINK; Will Submit to Mayor Today Plan for Widening Conduit Blvd. at $2,200,000". The New York Times. June 16, 1941. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  32. ^ "2 Million Sought By Moses For Highway Link: Would Widen Conduit Blvd.-Atlantic Ave. Project Ready in 1942" (PDF). Brooklyn Daily Eagle. June 16, 1941. p. 20. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 
  33. ^ "Greenway Master Plan: Conduit-Southern Queens-Laurelton-Cross Island" (PDF). New York City Department of City Planning, New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. July 2000. Retrieved February 27, 2017. 

External links[edit]