The South Brooklyn Railway
The South Brooklyn Railway (SBK) was organized around 1887 as a short extension of the Brooklyn, Bath and West End passenger railroad. In 1892, the company entended its route to connect with a ferry terminal that had opened in 1887 at the foot of 39th street to provided service with the southern tip of Manhattan. The interchange at 2nd Avenue permitted freight cars from the Bush Terminal to be connected to the SBK. The route ran from the terminal across 2nd Avenue, east through the Davidson Pipe Yard and across Third Avenue before connecting with the BMT at 4th Avenue and running underground to the large BMT railyard at 5th Avenue. The SBK ultimately continued east before running south along McDonald Avenue and terminating at the Coney Island yard.
The SBK was taken over by the NYC Board of Transportation in 1940, which ultimately became the Metropolitan Transit Authority. Freight business declined through the 1970s and the final freight run occurred in 1978. The right-of-way east of Fort Hamilton Parkway was abandoned and was largely paved over in the 1980s. The Davidson Pipe Yard became the site of a Costco warehouse store in 1996. However, as of Summer 2008, the SBK line still serves freight duty for the MTA, hauling new subway cars and using the small team track yard west of 2nd Avenue for storage.
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