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What's Next for This Abandoned New York City Rail Line?

The old Port Morris Branch of the New York and Harlem Railroad runs like a hidden scar through the heart of the South Bronx. Dating back to 1842, this decommissioned train line has been a dumping ground for decades, with layers of pollution and neglect heaped along its route. Traveling below street level for two miles from Port Morris through Mott Haven, Morrisania, and Melrose, its history has always been murky to neighborhood residents, who have nicknamed different sections of the tracks The Bronx Swamp and The Hole, and over the years, the abandoned train line has been been variously described as a "bug-infested basin," a "blight on the community," a "filthy concoction of standing water and garbage" and a "needle ridden Bronx drug den." But after a recent city-sponsored cleanup, the future of the Port Morris Branch has been brought back into the spotlight.

And it's complicated >>