If you’ve ever ridden on New York City’s subway system, you owe it to yourself to check out the Times’ interactive feature on the 24 last stops.
From Tottenville at the southwest end of Staten Island to Jamaica Center in Queens to Wakefield in the Bronx, the newspaper played modern-day Marco Polo and explored each neighborhood where the line ends.
It’s a simple yet intriguing idea (no doubt inspired by Shel Silverstein) and the Times pulls it off in their typically understated, glossless manner. The spot for the last stop of the L in Canarsie, for example, is simply a photo of a girl standing outside the station holding balloons. The report on the Middle Village stop, where the M line ends in Queens, showcases a couple of guys sitting on their stoop playing guitar.
There are video segments, as well, for the stops in Tottenville, Rockaway Park and 179th Street (in Queens). Similar to the photos, the videos focus on one simple subject; a monastery in Queens, a woman handing out maps of Staten Island to tourists, and a seafood restaurant on Jamaica Bay.
Of course, there are also the far less exotic last stops. Nearly everyone’s been to Astoria in Queens, Coney Island or the South Ferry stop in Lower Manhattan. Still, these destinations get equal billing with the likes of Norwood in the Bronx, Far Rockaway or Van Cortland Park.
An article compliments the fantastic user-guided, interactive display and sums up life on the edges of the five boroughs: “At the city’s often-threadbare fringes, there is an inescapable sense of lonesomeness.”