Fourth Avenue

Before walking north to 40th Street, peek down 43rd Street between Fourth and Fifth Avenues at the brownstone rowhouses (circa 1898-1904) that form a topographically elegant streetscape. In the 1890s, Fourth Avenue was planned as a “parkway” to South Brooklyn, with planted malls down its center, much like Park Avenue in Manhattan. Unfortunately, the malls were demolished when the subway arrived in Sunset Park in 1915 to make way for vents. Until the 1950s, when car ownership and vehicular traffic were on the rise, Fourth Avenue’s sidewalks were roughly eight feet wider than they are today, to accommodate the popular 19th and early 20th century pastime of “promenading.” The east side of the Avenue is in the National Register historic district.