This photo was taken in 1939, just after the el was dismantled. Imagine how grimy and dark Sixth Avenue must have been with trains constantly roaring overhead and the tracks and stations blocking out sunlight.
Plenty more has changed at the intersection of Sixth Avenue, Greenwich Avenue, Ninth Street, and Christopher Street in the ensuing 70 years. Sixth Avenue traffic no longer flows two ways. The Women’s House of Detention was torn down and turned into a lovely garden. Nedick’s hot dogs is now a Barnes & Noble.
And there’s now a traffic island in the middle of the intersection—making things even more chaotic and confusing for pedestrians and drivers alike.