photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Historic Railway Association
Last Sunday, a friend of mine excitedly told me that he witnessed a group of people hopping down a manhole at the intersection of Atlantic Avenue and Court Street in Brooklyn. After inquiring, he learned that it was the monthly tour of the abandoned Atlantic Avenue tunnel – the world’s oldest subway tunnel – hosted by the Brooklyn Historic Railway Association. The tunnel was built by the Long Island Rail Road in 1844, but sealed off in 1861 and quickly forgotten. After years of research and a lot of resistance from city officials, Bob Diamond rediscovered the tunnel in 1980, founded the Association, and now offers monthly tours.
Plus, the Association accepts proposals for performances and events in the tunnel! How exciting would it be to see or perform in a site-specific work in an abandoned Brooklyn tunnel! I’m sure the Performance Club would be eager to attend. In fact, a February NY Times article about the tunnel mentions that an acting group called LiveFeed worked their performance into the monthly tour.