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Prior to becoming part of New York City in 1898, Queens was primarily
a collection of villages scattered throughout farmland, and had no single
identity. As well, the borough had no single street naming pattern and
the names and numbers from village to village created a confusing map
of multiple Main Streets and Broadways.
In the 1920s, the borough of Queens copied the street grid pattern and
numbering system used in Philadelphia and renamed and renumbered most
of the streets throughout the country. This created a grid with streets
running roughly north and south and avenues running east and west. Street
numbers increased going east (from the East River) and avenue numbers
increased going south (from Long Island Sound.)
The new hyphenated numbering system is the only one in the five boroughs
that gives a descriptive coordinate of the location. The first two digits
are the cross street or avenue. The two digits after the hyphen are based
on simple numbering system -- so many feet are one lot, which is given
a unique house number. For wide lots they skip a number every so often
. Looking south, the odd numbers are to the left, and even numbers to
the right in ascending order.
Starting with College Point, all East West routes are Avenues. Starting
with Astoria, all North South routes are Streets. Sometimes the system
skips numbers. 32nd Avenue is all but skipped in Astoria, but exists in
other communities further east.
If there are additional streets, say between say 65th and 66 Aves., they
are named by a protocal. First street is a 'Road', second is a 'Drive'
and finally a 'Court' or 'Terrace' Conversely the system for extra 'Streets'
is 'Place', 'Lane,' and 'Court' or 'Terrace' Not certain as to where 'Crescent'
fits in. Special system in Rockaways, where numbers are proceeded by 'Beach.'
Select above Long Island City current street names or former street names.