7 Train The Big Connector
With 22 stops between the Island of Manhattan and Queens. The 7 train is much more than just a subway ride.
For the price of round trip Metrocard, you can have not only a ride, but a wonderful adventure that starts at the famous Hudson Yard on the West side of Manhattan, and end up in Flushing/Queens. One of the most diverse borough in NY.
Be ready! This is not going to be a bumpy ride.
The 7 line was inaugurated in 1915, eleven years after the first subway in New York started running. The line first run only between the island of Manhattan and Vernon/Jackson Boulevard in Queens. To be more precisely, it was only one stop connecting Grand Central and Queens. However, with the expansion of the boroughs outside Manhattan, authorities saw a demand for expansion of the 7 subway line. For the next several decades the line was extended between Times Squares and Flushing.
An important event helped fund and expand the services during the 60’s. It was the famous World fair that took place in Flushing Meadow park. For that occasion transit authorities decided for the first time to put a map showing all the stops between Manhattan and Queens.
In 2016 a hundred years after its inauguration the 7 line was extended to the West side of Manhattan to the 34 Hudson Yards.
Much more than just a train ride
The first stop in Queens from Manhattan is called Vernon/Jackson. Step outside and you will see a whole different atmosphere. Bars, pizza parlors, restaurants, real state offices, and small business shops. With the high prices for rent in Manhattan, a lot of yuppies decided that live one stop away from Manhattan is not so bad after at all. To accommodate the new influx of young people new high-risers were build. In this neighborhood is also possible to ride the Water-taxi and see the beautiful Manhattan skyline.
Another important stop in the 7 line is Queensboro Plaza. Besides connecting to the N and W line to the neighborhood Astoria, the rider can see Queensboro bridge and Manhattan skyline. From Queensboro Plaza until the 52nd stop, the train runs in a beautiful elevate tracks alongside Queens Boulevard. This area is well know for its multi-ethnic population. Get out at any stop and will be surprise with the offering regarding restaurants, bars, shops, supermarkets, fish market and much more. By the way, our friendly super hero Spider-man lives in this neighborhood.
Another important stop is 74/Broadway. Here starts one of the most diverse area in New York. If you walk alongside Roosevelt avenue until you reach 111 street, you will find people and businesses from different parts of Latin America. One of the most famous restaurant in Jackson Heights, La Pequena Colombiana is located right on the corner of 83 and Roosevelt Avenue.
The last stop of the 7 train is Flushing. Here we see another transformation. Step outside the train station and you’ll find yourself in a complete different world. Flushing is populated by people mainly from China and Korea. Here you can find fresh fruit and fish being sold on the side walk. Like any other stop along the 7 line, Flushing is also famous for its Chinese restaurants. Dumpling Galaxy located at 42-35 Main Street is one of the most popular.
Taking the 7 Train for Culture and Sports
Two of the most important museums located in Queens are very easy to access with the 7 line. The first one is MoMa PS1 few minutes away from Court Square stop. The second one is Queens Museum located at Mets-Willets Point stop. At this stop you’ll be able to see a baseball game during the summer, and also see the famous US Open tennis tournament in late August.
The International Express line
The 7 train is also called International Express line because of the highly culturally diverse population that ride the train daily. Especially when the train leaves Manhattan and get into Queens. At any given time is possible to hear Chinese, Portuguese, Spanish, French, Arabic, Creole, German, etc. According to Endangered Language Alliance more than 800 languages are spoken in Queens. You certainly can find many of them when riding the 7 train.
Marcela Phillips from Australia is a representation of the language diversity along the 7 line. She’s been living in Sunnyside for the past 2 years. She works in Manhattan as an administrator. She takes the train everyday to work. “The train takes me straight to the city,” she said. She has no problem during the week, however, she says that during the weekend is a little frustrate because the ongoing work.
Another 7 rider is Sinair Garcia from Mexico works with cleaning. He’s been living in Corona for the past 20 years. He works in Brooklyn and take the 7 trains everyday. like Marcela, he takes the train everyday. “It is good during the weekday, but is very bad during the weekend,” he said.
With more than 100 years on the job there is no sign of retirement for the 7 line. This is good not only for this neighborhood, but also for the entire city and the tourists that venture to the other side of the river.
With the 7 train you certainly can discover a new city within the city.