The New York-metro area public radio station WNYC interviewed Clifton Hood, the George E. Paulsen ’49 Professor of American History and Government, about the perennially stagnant progress on the Second Avenue Subway in Manhattan.
Hood, author of the book “722 Miles: The Building of the Subways and How they Transformed New York,” explains that the Second Avenue Subway “begins with this grandiose plan that dates to 1919, where there is an effort to build a subway line down every big avenue in New York City…plans to build a subway under the harbor from Manhattan to Staten Island, under the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.”
The plans never came to fruition for the same reason that stalls subway construction projects today: “A lack of money,” Hood explains.
Coming in the wake of the New York Metro Transit Authority’s decision to divert $1 billion from the next segment of the Second Avenue Subway, the full interview can be heard here on the WNYC website.
A member of the HWS faculty since 1992, Hood holds a bachelor’s degree summa cum laude from Washington University and a master’s and doctorate from Columbia University. His main fields of study include elites, New York City, historical memory and mass transit. His most recent book, “In Pursuit of Privilege: The Upper Class and the Making of New York City, since 1753,” is under contract with Columbia University Press. His courses focus on American urban history, elites in America, U.S. environmental history and U.S. ethnicity and immigration. He served previously as senior Fulbright Lecturer in Seoul National University in Korea.