34th Street (Manhattan)
|Length||2.0 mi (3.2 km)|
|Location||Manhattan, New York City|
|Postal code||10001, 10121, 10016|
|West end||NY 9A (12th Avenue) in Hudson Yards|
|East end||FDR Drive in Kips Bay / Murray Hill|
|North||40th Street (west of 11th Avenue)|
35th Street (east of 11th Avenue)
|South||33rd Street (west of 1st Avenue)|
30th Street (east of 1st Avenue)
34th Street is a major crosstown street in the New York City borough of Manhattan. It runs the width of Manhattan Island from West Side Highway on the West Side to the FDR Drive on the East Side. 34th Street is used as a crosstown artery between New Jersey to the west and Queens to the east, connecting the Lincoln Tunnel to New Jersey with the Queens Midtown Tunnel to Long Island.
Several notable buildings are located directly along 34th Street, including the Empire State Building, Macy's Herald Square, and Javits Center. Other structures, such as Pennsylvania Station, are located within one block of 34th Street. The street is served by the crosstown M34/M34A bus routes and contains several subway stops.
The street was designated by the Commissioners' Plan of 1811 that established the Manhattan street grid as one of 15 east-west streets that would be 100 feet (30 m) in width (while other streets were designated as 60 feet (18 m) in width).
In April 2010, the New York City Department of Transportation proposed to add bus rapid transit along the 34th Street corridor. To create exclusive lanes for buses, the street would be converted to one-way westbound operation west of Sixth Avenue and one-way eastbound operation east of Fifth Avenue; a pedestrian plaza would be created between Fifth and Sixth avenues. The street was eventually kept in two-way operation.
At the west end of the street one finds the Hudson River, the West Midtown Ferry Terminal, the West 30th Street Heliport, the Hudson River Greenway, the West Side Highway, and the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York City's main convention center. On the West Side, 34th Street is in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood, at the north end of the West Side Yard. Until 2017 the southwest corner at Tenth Avenue had McDonald's with a drive-thru and a small parking lot, a rarity in Manhattan. On Ninth is B&H Photo Video, a large retailer of photographic and electronic equipment.
Further east at Eighth and 33rd, the Post Office and Penn Station dominate on the south side of the street, serving Amtrak trains to destinations all over the United States and Canada, and Long Island Rail Road and New Jersey Transit trains to suburbs. Above Penn Station sits Madison Square Garden, which calls itself "the world's most famous arena". The grand stairs of the James Farley Post Office are built on the scale of the former Penn Station. The architecture of the post office gives a flavor of what the area was like in the height of the railroad era.
34th Street is a major shopping street. Though it endured a decline in the 1970s, it rebounded late in the 20th century with new stores and new energy. A giant video board and light display at 34th and Broadway is like a mini Times Square. Between Seventh Avenue and Broadway, one will find Macy's, the famous department store immortalized in the Christmas movie Miracle on 34th Street. It claims to be the "world's largest store." The annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade ends on 34th Street. A block south of 34th, at Sixth Avenue and 33rd Street, is the Manhattan Mall, an indoor shopping mall built inside what had been the flagship location of the Gimbel's department store. Branches of large chain stores also operate between 8th and 5th Avenues.
East of Herald Square and the hectic shopping district, the influence of the East Side and the sedate corporate office towers of the neighborhoods Kips Bay and Murray Hill starts to take hold. On Fifth Avenue one finds the Empire State Building. The second tallest building in the city, it stands on a rare ledge of solid Manhattan schist dominating the skyline. Slightly north, at 38th Street and 5th Avenue is Lord & Taylor; the oldest department store in the United States.
At the far end one finds bulky luxury residential buildings and a great number of dogs patronizing the pet care parlors that serve the pure-bred loving populations of Kips Bay, which is the name of both the neighborhood and its eponymous bend in the East River where 34th Street ends. At the riverbank are the FDR Drive, the East River Greenway for bicycling to the south end of Manhattan, a small parking lot for New York University, the East 34th Street Ferry Landing (NY Waterway, SeaStreak), and the East 34th Street Heliport.
The New York Post listed one part of the street – the block of between Sixth and Seventh Avenues – as one of "the most dangerous blocks in the city" because police crime statistics for 2015 showed that 44 burglaries and 244 grand larcenies had been reported there, more property theft than for any other city block.
Places located along or within one block of 34th Street include (from west to east):
- Jacob K. Javits Convention Center
- Hudson Yards buildings
- Congregation Beth Israel West Side Jewish Center
- Manhattan Center
- Hammerstein Ballroom
- New Yorker Hotel
- One Penn Plaza
- New York City Pennsylvania Station
- Macy's Herald Square
- Mercy College (New York)
- Herald Square
- Empire State Building
- Sy Syms School of Business
- New York Estonian House
- St. Vartan Cathedral
- Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine of New York University Medical Center
Pennsylvania Station is located on 33rd Street, one block south, between Seventh and Eighth Avenues.
- 34th Street–Hudson Yards (IRT Flushing Line); serving the 7 and <7> trains
- 34th Street–Penn Station (IND Eighth Avenue Line); serving the A, C, and E trains
- 34th Street–Penn Station (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line); serving the 1, 2, and 3 trains
- 34th Street Herald Square; serving the B, D, F, <F>, M, N, Q, R, and W trains
- 33rd Street (IRT Lexington Avenue Line); serving the 4, 6, and <6> trains
In addition, the following PATH station serves 34th Street:
In the past, three of the four former IRT elevated lines had a station at 34th Street:
- 34th Street on the IRT Second Avenue Line
- 34th Street on the IRT Third Avenue Line
- 34th Street on the IRT Ninth Avenue Line
- Google (August 31, 2015). "34th Street (Manhattan)" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved August 31, 2015.
- Morris, Gouverneur, De Witt, Simeon, and Rutherford, John [sic] (March 1811) "Remarks Of The Commissioners For Laying Out Streets And Roads In The City Of New York, Under The Act Of April 3, 1807", Cornell University Library. Accessed June 27, 2016. "These streets are all sixty feet wide except fifteen, which are one hundred feet wide, viz.: Numbers fourteen, twenty-three, thirty-four, forty-two, fifty-seven, seventy-two, seventy-nine, eighty-six, ninety-six, one hundred and six, one hundred and sixteen, one hundred and twenty-five, one hundred and thirty-five, one hundred and forty-five, and one hundred and fifty-five--the block or space between them being in general about two hundred feet."
- Grynbaum, Michael M. (April 22, 2010). "Plan for 34th St. Puts Buses and Feet First". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-30.
- Balsamini, Dean (March 6, 2016) "Do you live on one of New York’s most dangerous blocks?" New York Post
- "Manhattan Bus Map" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. December 2017. Retrieved April 24, 2018.
- "Subway Map" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. October 21, 2019. Retrieved January 18, 2018.
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