Central RR of Long Island ROW

 

These maps show my best guess of the Central RR through Queens from Flushing to Floral Park.

a. Flushing to Creedmoor - abandoned 1879, although the rails were still in existence until about WWI. The line branched off from what is now the Port Washington branch near the intersection of Sanford Ave. and DeLong St. and ran SE through what is now the Kissena Corridor and Cunningham Park. Up to this point, there is very little evidence of the old ROW. However, from there the evidence starts building as, I assume, it followed Stewart Rd. ("The Stewart Road" was the popular name for the line in its day, since it was built by A.T. Stewart, who also founded Garden City) and crossed Hillside Ave. just east of Braddock. From there, current street patterns clearly show the way as it crosses Winchester Blvd. a few blocks south of Hillside. Then it contiued east to a point just south of the current Little League ballfield, with a spur going north to the now Creedmoor State Hospital. (See Art Huneke's Creedmoor page HERE)

b. Creedmoor to Floral Park (formerly Hinsdale)- Abandoned around the late-1960's, probably not used for years by then. After the line from Flushing was abandoned in 1879, this portion of the Central RR was used for freight traffic to the Hospital, which sits on the location of the old Creedmoor Rifle Range (note the street names - Winchester, Springfield, Range, Saber, etc.). The current street patterns again show the way as the line goes east, mainly between 87th and 88th Aves., crossing Jamaica Ave./Jericho Tpke. at the intersection of Tulip Ave. and Little Neck Parkway. The trestle over Jamaica Ave. was demolished in the mid '70's. and a Municipal Parking Lot exists where the line heads toward the intersection with the LIRR main line at Floral Park.

c. Floral Park to Garden City - currently in use as a portion of the LIRR Hempstead Branch. Two of the oldest surviving trestles are located on the ROW. The fiest is between Stewart Manor and Nassau Blvd. at Tanners Pond Rd. (see pictures following). The second is between Nassau Blvd. and Garden City at Cherry Valley Ave. Both are dated 1871. Thanks to Ron C. for this information.

d. Garden City to Bethpage - Abandoned just before WWII. A portion of it was rebuilt after the War and used to supply materials for the building of Levittown. A short stretch (officially known as Garden City Secondary) to just west of the Meadowbrook Parkway is still used today for limited freight traffic and for storing the Barnum and Bailey Circus train in the spring. There is an old brick station at the corner of Clinton Rd. at St James St. that is now used for the Garden City Fire Dept. This is the former Clinton Rd. station that was used in the shuttle service which continued until the early 1950's from Garden City along the old ROW, probably to the Meadowbrook station.) East of the Meadowbrook, the ROW disappears through Eisenhower Park. From there a line of high tension wires traces the ROW to Bethpage. This area is also near where the Long Island Motor Parkway used to run and at several places, both the road and the RR were very close. Thanks to Vince Fitzgerald and his excellent Hempstead Plains website, the relationship between the two can be seen in this map that he has created.

e. Bethpage to Babylon - currently in use as the LIRR's Central Branch, which allows trains fom the main line (Mineola, Hicksville) to go to Babylon, Patchogue and Montauk.

Visit Art Huneke's Central RR pages

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