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Delancey Street is one of the main thoroughfares of New York City's Lower East Side in Manhattan, running from the street's western terminus at the Bowery to its eastern end at FDR Drive, connecting to the Williamsburg Bridge and Brooklyn at Clinton Street. It is an eight-lane, median-divided street west of Clinton Street, and a service road for the Williamsburg Bridge east of Clinton Street. West of Bowery, Delancey Street becomes Kenmare Street, which continues as a four-lane, undivided street to Lafayette Street.
Businesses range from delis to check-cashing stores to bars. Delancey Street has long been known for its discount and bargain clothing stores. Famous establishments include the Bowery Ballroom, built in 1929, Ratner's kosher restaurant (now closed), and the Essex Street Market, which was built by Mayor Fiorello La Guardia to avoid pushcart congestion on the neighborhood's narrow streets. Until the middle 20th century, Delancey Street was a main shopping street in the predominantly Jewish Lower East Side. Since the late 2000s, the neighborhood around Delancey is more diverse; including African Americans, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Chinese. Gentrification has brought more upscale retail and nightlife establishments.
The New York City Subway's F, <F>, J, M, and Z trains serve the Delancey Street/Essex Street station, and the J and Z trains also stop at the Bowery station. The New York City Bus's M9, M14A SBS, M14D SBS, M15, M103 and B39 routes stop on Delancey Street. The Williamsburg Bridge Trolley Terminal, beneath Delancey and Essex Streets, was a station and balloon loop for streetcars crossing the Williamsburg Bridge from Brooklyn. The Lowline, an underground public park in which natural light would be directed using fiber optics to create a setting in which trees and grass could be grown indoors, was proposed in 2011.
Because of the extreme width of Delancey Street, and the high rate of fatalities along it, safety measures were erected along its length in the 2000s and 2010s. This includes pedestrian plazas, bans on left turns along the street, and pedestrian countdown signals.
Kenmare Street runs westward for a total of five blocks from the Bowery to Lafayette Street. It is a major thoroughfare for traffic travelling westbound to the Holland Tunnel. The street was founded in 1911 by Tim Sullivan, the son of immigrants Daniel O’Sullivan and Catherine Connelly, who came from Kenmare, County Kerry, Ireland.
- Foderaro, Lisa W. "Inspired by High Line, Park Is Envisioned With Sights Set Low", The New York Times, November 21, 2011. Accessed November 21, 2011.
- Plans for Delancey Underground presented to Community Board 3
- Delancey Street 2012
- The story of how New York's Kenmare St got its name from famine emigrants