IRT Second Avenue Line
The IRT Second Avenue Line, also known as the Second Avenue El, was an elevated railway in Manhattan, New York City, United States, from 1875 to 1942. It was operated by the Interborough Rapid Transit Company until 1940, when the city took over the failing line. Service north of the 57th Street ended on June 11, 1940; the rest of the line closed on June 13, 1942.
The commission also granted the Gilbert Elevated Railway Company the right to operate the Sixth Avenue Elevated and soon afterward the Gilbert Elevated Railway changed its name to the Metropolitan Elevated Railway.
A third track was added to the line between 1914 and 1916. The additional track made possible express service on the line during peak hours.
The Second Avenue El did not run entirely on Second Avenue. Its southern terminus was City Hall, and it continued to Chatham Square, where it junctioned with the Third Avenue El and ran along Division Street and then Allen Street. At Houston Street it ran north on First Avenue, where it turned left on 23rd Street ran north on Second Avenue to 129th Street. At that point it joined with the Third Avenue El and crossed the Harlem River into the Bronx. 
As of 1934 Second Avenue service operated as follows:
- Second Avenue Local - day and evenings 129th Street to South Ferry, alternate evening and Sunday trains 129th Street to City Hall. No all-night service was operated.
- Second Avenue Express - Bronx Park to City Hall weekday and Saturday AM peak southbound, City Hall to Fordham Road or Tremont Avenue weekday PM peak northbound, also Freeman Street to City Hall via West Farms Road Line, making express stops in Manhattan.
- Second Avenue-Queens - South Ferry to Willets Point Blvd weekday and Saturday AM peak, City Hall to Willets Point Blvd weekday midday and PM peak, 57th Street to Willets Point Blvd evenings and Sundays. In addition City Hall to Astoria Weekday AM peak and midday and Saturday daytime, South Ferry to Astoria weekday PM peak, 57th Street to Astoria evenings and Sundays. Midday and Saturday trains used the express tracks, weekday peak trains made all stops.
On April 23, 1939 express service was inaugurated weekday and Saturday daytime in Queens between Queensboro Plaza and 111th Street, where elevated trains were cut back to. On September 8, 1939 Astoria trains were rerouted in the weekday PM peak to City Hall. The Second Avenue Elevated was closed north of 59th Street June 12, 1940. Evening and Sunday Queens trains were extended to City Hall or South Ferry. On May 19, 1941 evening and Sunday service was discontinued. Finally, on June 13, 1942 all service was discontinued.
The M15 bus, which runs along much of the IRT Second Avenue Elevated Line's route, carries more passengers than any other route in New York City. However, it does not carry as many passengers as a rapid transit line; additionally, transfers to rapid transit stations can only be made using surface connections. The Second Avenue Subway, a rapid transit route following much of the same route, has been under consideration since 1919, 23 years before the 1942 demolition of the IRT Second Avenue Line. The first phase is under construction as of 2007, and is scheduled to open in December 2016.
|Merges with IRT Third Avenue Line|
|125th Street||all||After the line opened||June 11, 1940|
|121st Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|117th Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|111th Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|105th Street||local||After the line opened||June 11, 1940|
|99th Street||local||June 13, 1942|
|92nd Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|86th Street||all||June 11, 1940|
|80th Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|72nd Street||local||June 11, 1940|
|65th Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 11, 1940|
|Branch over Queensboro Bridge to Queensboro Plaza leaves at 59th Street|
|57th Street||all||June 13, 1942|
|50th Street||local||June 13, 1942|
|42nd Street||all||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|34th Street||local||June 13, 1942||Transfer to branch to 34th Street Ferry|
|23rd Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|19th Street||local||June 13, 1942|
|14th Street||all||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|Eighth Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|First Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|Rivington Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|Grand Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|Canal Street||local||March 1, 1880||June 13, 1942|
|Chatham Square||all||March 1, 1880||May 12, 1955||Transfer to Third Avenue Line and branch to City Hall|
|Merges with IRT Third Avenue Line|
|Franklin Square||all||August 26, 1878||December 22, 1950|
|Fulton Street||all||August 26, 1878||December 22, 1950|
|Hanover Square||all||August 26, 1878||December 22, 1950|
|Merges with IRT Ninth Avenue Line|
|South Ferry||all||August 26, 1878||December 22, 1950|
- Staff. "Second Avenue 'El' Coming to a Stop", The Christian Science Monitor, June 13, 1942. Accessed October 12, 2008.
- Rapid Transit in New York City and in Other Great Cities. prepared by the Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York. 1905. p. 52. Retrieved 2009-02-11.
- Red Book Information Guide to New York. Interstate Map Co. 1935.
- "More Elevated Facilities, the Second Avenue Line and City Hall Branch Opened" (PDF). The New York Times Company. 2 March 1880. p. 3. Retrieved 21 February 2009.
- "Rapid Transit on the Bowery" (PDF). The New York Times Company. 26 August 1878. p. 8. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "Second Avenue El in Manhattan". By NJI Publishing with text provided by Joe Cunningham. 1995. ISBN 0-934088-33-0
- The 2nd Avenue Elevated - nycsubway.org
- Fallen Transit: The Loss of Rapid Transit on New York's Second Avenue
- 100 Years Ago on Second Avenue - The Launch Box Blog
- Time Traveling on the Second Avenue El