To Build New York: 100 Years of Infrastructure

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9780071608626: To Build New York: 100 Years of Infrastructure

A Spectacular Blend of Photographs, Facts, Anecdotes, and Personal Stories that Tell How the World's Greatest City Was Built!

Without its vast infrastructure, New York would not have been able to forge five boroughs into one city, welcome millions of newcomers, and become the financial and cultural capital of the world.

Covering the period from 1909-2009, To Build New York is an informative, engaging account of the who, what, when, where, how, and why of New York's infrastructure--together with stories of the people who did all the work.

This superb urban chronicle offers readers a revealing inside look at the building of New York's roads and highways, bridges and tunnels, the subway system and rail lines, airports and aqueducts, skyscrapers, electric power grid, sewage treatment plants, and other facilities.

Written in a vivid and highly entertaining style, To Build New York features:

  • An authoritative account of New York City's physical development from 1909 to 2009
  • More than 100 illustrations, including archival never-before-published photographs and details
  • Numerous facts, anecdotes, and behind-the-scenes information about how and why certain elements of the infrastructure came to exist
  • Fascinating sidebars that describe the technologies devised for the construction projects in each area of infrastructure
  • A Foreword by Michael R. Bloomberg

Panoramic in scope yet filled with hundreds of amazing particulars, To Build New York is the story of the creation of the world's greatest city--told from the point of view of the inventive, hardworking people who built it.

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The General Contractors Association of New York, established in 1909, provides comprehensive answers and definitive solutions to the questions and concerns of New York City's heavy construction contractors and engineers.

Review:

Issued by the General Contractors Association of New York (GCA), this attractive centennial volume chronicles 20th-century Big Apple infrastructure construction beginning in 1909, when the GCA was formed. Presenting historic photographs (more than 100, some never before published), time lines, contemporary news, and anecdotes, the book moves chronologically from the openings of the Queensboro and Manhattan bridges to improvements in mass transit, roads and tunnels, water and sewers, urban renewal, and rehabilitation. Its appealing visual format strikes a favorable balance between information excess and readability. A GCA directory, which names founding companies and modern offshoots, and photos of past association presidents and memorabilia take up about 20 pages at the end. This informative and well-designed publication, particularly of value for historical ready-reference facts, photos, and in-the-trenches perspectives, is recommended for academic and larger public libraries.

Russell T. Clement
Northwestern Univ. Lib., Evanston, IL (Library Journal)

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