NYC’s Street Grid Turns 200 Years Old

03.21.11 Bucky Turco

Back in 1811, city officials did something remarkable when they instituted a rectangular street grid. Unlike the confusing twisty streets found in Lower Manhattan, a more orderly system that one critic called a “primal topographic curse,” would forever alter the development of NYC and most importantly, give residents the twice a year urban-solar phenomenon know as Manhattanhenge. Someone—the Illuminati?—clearly knew what they were doing. (Photo: Marina Galperina/ANIMALNewYork)