Cobblestone streets of New York City (BS File Photo)
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Cobblestone streets of New York City (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
Cobblestone streets of New York City (Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)

Here’s a selection of cobblestone streets in New York. Most are the rough, generally unmaintained variety that has simply been left in place since the street was first cobbled—the kind you dread to ride over on a bike. In a few places, smooth or generally smooth streets and sidewalks have been redone and bike riding is much easier. In all, there are about 15-miles of cobblestone streets remaining in New York City.

Sometime later, I’ll post an example of a re-cobbled street in the West Village and the new specially “euro-cobbled” Wall Street. In New York, a street with historic paving like cobblestone must be replaced in kind when it’s torn up for repair or utility work. It’s pretty impressive seeing a completely brand new cobbled street.

The New York Times had a nice article about cobblestone (pros and cons) streets this summer. We’ve talked about cobblestone streets on Broken Sidewalk, too.

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Branden Klayko

Branden Klayko

Founder and Editor at Broken Sidewalk
Branden founded Broken Sidewalk in 2008 while practicing architecture in Louisville. He continued the site for seven years while living in New York City, returning to Louisville in 2016. Branden is a graduate of the College of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, and has covered architecture, design, and urbanism for The Architect's Newspaper, Designers & Books, Inhabitat, and the American Institute of Architects.
Branden Klayko

5 COMMENTS

  1. Is that true? I’m so relieved. Does anyone know how many cobblestone spots still exist in Louisville?

  2. I know that there are a number of cobblestone streets in and around the Clifton neighborhood, at least when I was growing up there in the mid 1990’s. I always loved it when a trip to school or the doctor’s office took us over those old pavers; but I also remember how we would always have to slow to almost a crawl so the poorly maintained cobblestone wouldn’t rattle our old car to pieces. Guess that just highlights the importance of proper maintenance!

  3. A correction to a common mistake: the pavements shown are “Belgian block” or “sett” pavements, which use quarried granite. Cobblestone pavement uses flat stones that are naturally shaped by the flow of water. I’m not aware of any original cobblestoned streets in NYC.

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