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How Did Newkirk Plaza Become An Express Stop?
When Newkirk Plaza was born in 1910, it became the first open air shopping mall in New York. Generations of urban planners have cited it as a unique strategy for serving mass transit and commercial needs. But how did it come to be? Who was the Father of Newkirk Plaza? The answer is Mr. Necessity, also known as the Mother of Invention. To explain, we need to present a short history of the railroad that lies beneath the stores.
When it began operating in 1878, the Brighton railroad had few stops in the rural area south of Prospect Park. One of them was a station that consisted of a small shack on Newkirk Avenue, named after the nearest village, Parkville.
But as the population grew, shacks were added at Beverly Road, Cortelyou Road, Fiske Terrace and other points south.
By 1905 the Parkville station had been renamed South Midwood, reflecting the booming Germania Real Estate company's de…