The Secret Underground World Of New York City
Urban explorer Steve Duncan goes places no one in their right mind would go, examining the hidden infrastructure — tunnels, subways, and sewers — of cities all over the world. Watch him reveal New York City’s secret underground world.
Andrew Wonder’s video follows Duncan during some recent adventures in New York. To start, Wonder and Duncan take a quick jaunt down the subway line to a “secret” subway station that’s familiar to Jalopnik readers — the City Hall subway station.
As if that weren’t cool enough, the pair take us into the underground Canal Street sewer in Manhattan. The sewer, New York’s first covered sewer, was roofed over in 1812. Before that, it was an open ditch — a canal, if you will, that gave Canal Street its name.
The Canal Street ditch actually was a stream apparently large enough that prior to European settlement, natives of the region could canoe from the Hudson River, along the stream into the Collect Pond (the site of what is now Columbus Park, the pond supplied New York’s water until it became horribly polluted by the growth of the city in the 18th Century).
Next up in Duncan and Wonder’s urban spelunking are the old Amtrak tunnels next to the Lincoln Tunnel. Duncan shows off the jury-rigged ancient timber atop crumbling natural rock that’s holding up New York City streets. Last up, as police birds circle overhead, Duncan scales the Williamsburg Bridge to get an unbelievable look at the city of New York. It’s amazing.
Although you can safely travel the 6 train to see the City Hall subway station, we don’t suggest taking a run at any of the other locations unless you’re traveling with an experienced guide like Duncan. It’s dangerous, illegal and potentially hazardous to your health.
Photo: Steve Duncan
<p>UNDERCITY from Andrew Wonder on Vimeo.</p>