Rochester Subway

Located in Rochester, NY US

  • Built:N/A
  • Opened:1927
  • Age:91 years
  • Closed:1956
  • Demo / Renovated:N/A
  • Decaying for:62 years
  • Last Known Status:Abandoned

View full size photo

Rochester Subway History

In December 1927, the new trolley subway system for the city of Rochester opened to the public in an attempt to relieve the automobile traffic that was accumulating after the Erie canal ceased operations in 1919. The subway served as an interchange for the handful of rail lines entering the city, as well as for inner-city transportation.

Throughout its years of operation, the Rochester Subway was never used to its full potential; as soon as the 1930s the subway had started limiting routes. After vagrants started inhabiting the tunnels and the lack of funding, the subway became closed to passengers in 1956, and was only used for the occasional freight train until 1997. Many of the stations and other structures along the line have been demolished over the years. The remaining section of the subway is a tunnel underneath Broad Street that spans two miles long, where the remains of two stations still exist; West Main Street and City Hall. Some of the rails have been salvaged by preservationist groups.

Recent plans are to spend $12 million to fill the space with dirt because the columns and road deck are in need of repair. In 2005, a DVD called End of the Line was released, archiving the history of the subway system from its opening in 1927 to the closing in 1956.

Historic Images

Photos of Rochester Subway