Thursday, May 19, 2011

Subway Cars on the Hudson

A decade ago, in a moment of inspiration, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority stumbled on a way to help the environment and its own bottom line: donating retired subway trains to the little-known cause of creating artificial reefs. More than 2,500obsolete subway cars — including 1,269 of the classic ocher-hued Redbird cars — were packed up, shipped out and then, with a splash, dropped into silent graves at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, somewhere off the coasts of six states up and down the Eastern Seaboard.

Members of the Yonkers Paddling and Rowing Club, Beczak’s next-door neighbor, have seen this “subway barge” as they entered the Spuyten Duyvil from the Hudson River. Says paddler Steve, “I was surprised by the quickly moving barge jutting out in front of me from the Harlem. It was such a breath taking and gargantuan sight to see! Subway cars piled six high.”

Just this week Jack, another paddler, told us, “A few of us were paddling down near Sputen Duyvil when the barge left the Harlem River and headed out to sea.”

Here are the New York Times photos of their final resting place: