Skip to main content

Binghamton in 1951

As a former resident of the Binghamton, NY area (I lived in neighboring Johnson City for about a year and a half), I was curious to check out a 1951 film on YouTube from the New York State Archives that promoted the benefits of the New York State Thruway to Binghamton and Endicott. But wait a minute, you may say. The Thruway doesn't and never went to Binghamton. True, but this video touts the economic, industrial, agricultural and recreational opportunities that come with the construction of the Thruway. Plus, fans of old signs will enjoy some of the gems seen in this video.

I was also interested in seeing the Washington Street Bridge carrying vehicular traffic over the Susquehanna River, as this bridge is now a pedestrian bridge. You can check out the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA3XzrLAG-4. Thanks to area resident Dylan Lainhart for advising me to check out the video.

The New York State Archives is posting a number of videos on YouTube, and if you want to see more videos, you can go to http://www.youtube.com/user/nysarchives.

Also in 1951, the Vestal Parkway (now NY 434) was under construction in the Town of Vestal. I've had the following photo, courtesy of Chris Curley, in my queue to be added for quite a while, and this is a good chance to show the photo.



Chris had also sent me a description about the photo. "From Jensen Rd looking east towards Binghamton. The first building on the left is the Vestal Steak House. The road on the far left is Old Vestal Rd and you can see Vestal Hills Cemetery to the left of that. The field at the top right is where SUNY Binghamton is."

Vestal Parkway is now a hodgepodge of shopping centers and other businesses in the area where the photo was taken, and is one of the main commercial thoroughfares in Broome County.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Relief Route That Wasn't: The Never Built I-70 Bypass in the Mid-Mon Valley

In June 1963, a small blurb in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette read that The Westmoreland Engineering Company was awarded a $24,060 bid to study the proposed construction of Interstate 70 in Westmoreland and Washington Counties.  The study was to see what the construction and right-of-way costs "...to modernize the existing highway to Interstate requirements within eight months." (1)  This small, non-attributed, three paragraph article came less than a decade after the completion of a four lane highway that linked the Mid-Mon Valley to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. This would be the start of a 15 year process to upgrade and improve Interstate 70 - a process that ultimately never produced a single foot of new highway.

This is the story, albeit brief, of the I-70 that never came about.

Background:
What is now known as Interstate70 from Washington to New Stanton began as a connecting highway for the region to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  Known as the "Express Highway", construct…

The Many Failed Plans of Pittsburgh's Wabash Bridge and Tunnel

The December 27, 2004 opening of the Wabash Tunnel ended over 70 years of proposals and speculation for the use of the over 100 year old facility.  The tunnel, which is now a reversible roadway that is an alternative route for rush hour traffic, saw many failed plans during the 20th Century.  These plans included options for mass transit, converted and new bridges for vehicles, and other forms of transportation.

Brief History:
Constructed in 1902-04, the Wabash Bridge and Tunnel was planned and financed by rail mogul, Jay Gould.  Gould began his "Battle of the Wabash" with the established railroads of the city in 1890.  He would finally emerge victorious, but during that struggle, Gould would see many setbacks that would eventually result in the railroad's bankruptcy in 1908.  On October 19, 1903, when the two ends of the bridge were to be joined together over the Monongahela River, the 109' bridge collapsed; killing ten men.  Construction would resume four days later …

Independence Boulevard - Charlotte's First Urban Highway

Today, the major pieces of Charlotte's highway network include the Outerbelt (I-485), Interstates 77 and 85, and the Brookshire and Belk Freeways (I-277), but nearly sixty years ago Charlotte's first major urban highway project would begin.  The construction of Independence Boulevard in the 1940s and early 1950s would give Charlotte and North Carolina its first urban expressway, and would usher in a new era of highway building throughout the state.
With the help of former mayor, Ben Douglas - who sat on the State Highway Commission in the 1940s - the push for building Independence Blvd. began.  In 1946, city residents passed a $200,000 bond issue that would go along with over $2 million in federal funding.  The highway would open in two stages in 1949 and 1950.  When a grade separated interchange was built at South Blvd. and Morehead St. in the mid 1950s, Independence Blvd. was completed. (1)  Although the highway was not a fully controlled access highway, it gave motorists an …