40°49′54.79″N 73°54′19.57″W / 40.8318861°N 73.9054361°W / 40.8318861; -73.9054361

Third Avenue
Looking north from 9th Street in 2007
OwnerCity of New York
Maintained byNYCDOT
Length10.7 mi (17.2 km)[1][2]
LocationManhattan and the Bronx in New York City
South endAstor Place / St. Mark's Place in Cooper Square
Harlem River Drive in East Harlem
I-87 in Mott Haven
I-95 in Morrisania/Tremont
North end US 1 (Fordham Road) in Fordham
EastSecond Avenue
WestFourth Avenue (between 8th and 14th Streets)
Irving Place (between 14th and 20th Streets
Lexington Avenue (north of 21st Street)
CommissionedMarch 1811
A Third Avenue flower shop in the 1970s
Scheffel Hall (1895) is a remnant of the time when Kleindeutschland extended up Third Avenue as far as East 17th Street

Third Avenue is a north-south thoroughfare on the East Side of the New York City borough of Manhattan, as well as in the center portion of the Bronx. Its southern end is at Astor Place and St. Mark's Place. It transitions into Cooper Square, and further south, the Bowery, Chatham Square, and Park Row. The Manhattan side ends at East 128th Street. Third Avenue is two-way from Cooper Square to 24th Street, but carries only northbound (uptown) traffic while in Manhattan above 24th Street; in the Bronx, it is again two-way. However, the Third Avenue Bridge carries vehicular traffic in the opposite direction, allowing only southbound vehicular traffic, rendering the avenue essentially non-continuous to motor vehicles between the boroughs.

The street leaves Manhattan and continues into the Bronx across the Harlem River over the Third Avenue Bridge north of East 129th Street to East Fordham Road at Fordham Center, where it intersects with U.S. 1. It is one of the four streets that form The Hub, a site of both maximum traffic and architectural density, in the South Bronx.[3]

History Edit

Like most urban streets, Third Avenue was unpaved until the late 19th century. In May 1861, according to a letter to the editor of The New York Times, the street was the scene of practice marching for the poorly equipped troops in the 7th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment: "The men were not in uniform, but very poorly dressed, — in many cases with flip-flap shoes. The business-like air with which they marched rapidly through the deep mud of the Third-avenue was the more remarkable."[4]

On July 17, 1960, the section of Third Avenue in Manhattan north of 24th Street was converted into a one-way road.[5] Starting in July 2023, a bus lane and a protected bike lane were installed on Third Avenue between 59th and 96th Streets, and that section of the avenue was narrowed from five to three vehicular travel lanes.[6][7]

Public transportation Edit

Buses Edit

Portions of Third Avenue are served by several routes in Manhattan. Buses serving Third Avenue include the Third and Lexington Avenues Line (or Third and Amsterdam Avenues Line). Note that southbound M98, M101, M102, and M103 service operates on Lexington Avenue north of East 24th Street.

Along the Bronx's Third Avenue also run several bus routes:

  • Bx2: between East 138th Street to East 149th Street
  • Bx15 (and formerly Bx55): between East 149th Street and Fordham Plaza
  • Bx21: between East 138th Street and Boston Road

Subway Edit

Third Avenue was the location of the Third Avenue Railroad, a horsecar line established in 1853 that evolved into one of the largest streetcar systems in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Westchester County. Later it was served by the Third Avenue elevated line, which operated from 1878[8] until 1955 in Manhattan, and 1973 in the Bronx. The Bx55 replaced the Third Avenue Line in the Bronx in 1973. At the time the El was being torn down in Manhattan, there was a movement to rename the whole of Third Avenue in Manhattan "the Bouwerie" (but not the portion in the Bronx), although it had never been part of the Bowery.[9] Today, the Third Avenue – 149th Street station (2 and ​5 trains) and Third Avenue – 138th Street station (6 and <6>​ trains) are served by the New York City Subway.

In Manhattan, several crosstown subway routes have entrances on Third Avenue:

See also Edit

References Edit


  1. ^ Google (September 10, 2015). "Third Avenue" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  2. ^ Google (September 10, 2015). "Third Avenue (Bronx)" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved September 10, 2015.
  3. ^ Bronx Hub Archived August 1, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "A Word in Season on an Important Subject", letter to the editor, New York Times, May 16, 1861, retrieved: June 23, 2008
  5. ^ Spiegel, Irving (July 18, 1960). "2 One-Way Shifts Go Smoothly". The New York Times. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  6. ^ "37 blocks of Manhattan's 3rd Avenue getting redesign for more bus, bike lanes". ABC7 New York. July 18, 2023. Retrieved July 19, 2023.
  7. ^ Brachfeld, Ben (July 18, 2023). "Construction starts next week on redesign of Third Avenue on Upper East Side, adding bus and protected bike lanes". amNewYork. Retrieved July 19, 2023.
  8. ^ Nevius, p.138-140
  9. ^ Nevius, p.171


  • Nevius, Michelle & Nevius, James (2009), Inside the Apple: A Streetwise History of New York City, New York: Free Press, ISBN 141658997X

External links Edit

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