By the time of the American Revolution, the city covered only the southern tip of the island. The Dakota (72nd Street and Central Park West) was considered 'way out in the sticks when it was completed in 1884. I understand that there was parkland, then and now, but at what point was Manhattan first considered to be fully developed?
I was curious about the answer (don’t want to pass myself off as an expert in urban development) and came across this. Check out the video here. Depending on your definition of “fully developed”, the answer may be as late as the early 50s. 1950s, that is.
Interesting video. I’m a bit surprised they cut out Central Park from the beginning. There wasn’t much there but it wasn’t that much of a wasteland previous to its transformation.
Manhattan started really filling up after the subway system was extended to The Bronx in 1905. That’s what you see at the top of the island, which is essentially filled in by WWI. Some open parcels remained, but I don’t think anybody at the time would consider the island as less than developed.
The setting aside of Central Park was deliberate. The people who donated it but kept the adjacent land, especially the east side and the property values there shot up enormously. While there may have been unbuilt parcels in the 1950s, I lived there in the early 60s and there was nothing significant. But only if I had bought a house on the upper west side (around 86th). It was more or less affordable and would be worth many millions today. I know someone whose parents, both ordinary school teachers did exactly that and left him and his sister moderately wealthy.
Interesting, thanks. Central Park wasn’t bought and platted until 1853, though (don’t know why the video shows it in 1804, unless to give a reference point). PBS had a special on the creation of Central Park a few years ago which pointed out that all the land for the park was purchased for less than the cost, in adjusted dollars, of a single luxury apartment overlooking it today.
Heck, that’s true for Alaska. (OK, not in adjusted dollars.)
I think it happened at the “I am the hall monitor” comment.
They show all the areas that eventually became parkland as bright green from the beginning. Central Park is just more obvious than the others.
Ninja’ed! I came here to say just that. One always has to be on the ball here at the SDMB to be first with the good answers!
Thread winner, White SIFL
Yeah, we got that. The question is why they felt such a misleading approach was necessary. It shouldn’t have been very hard to suddenly turn Central Park green in the 1850s. It would have been more dramatic and interesting if they had.
I don’t get it.
It may have been before your time (Ya n00b!), but we had a moderator in General Questions called Manhattan. In a legendary exchange, someone was junior modding and said “Are you the hall monitor?” and Manhattan ripped them a new one, saying “No, I’m the fucking hall monitor.”
Good times. Good times.
ETA: Just tried to search for the thread, and could find pages of hits discussing it, but couldn’t find the original
Maybe you got it, but the person I was responding to didn’t seem to. At least, that wasn’t his question.
2002 and we’re still talking about it! Legendary, indeed!
I’m a hella lot newer here than Elendil’s Heir, and I knew about that.
That thread was also the source of “Banhattan,” originally a typo, but a most apt one.
Yes! Yes it was!
Huh. Never heard of it before. Thanks!
I always wanted to use that line. The closest was when a poster called me “Sister Clare.”
I really wanted to say “I am fucking Sister Clare” but I realized that could be a double entendre.