There were evidence of stairways that went nowhere....
...and all sorts of steam pipes which ran beneath the streets here.
The most interesting thing here, however, was the remains of an old building.
Inside, someone had been doing math equations and calculating Pi.
Behind the building was a doorway, with some humorous and ominous warnings spray painted on the wall.
The doorway was gated with an iron door, but it was ajar. It led into a small filled with refuse. A small arched tunnel led out of the rear of the room, a shopping cart partially blocking it. This is the scary tunnel is was referring into in the first entry.
There were knocking noises coming from out of the tunnel, which in reality probably just loose steam pipes or some noise traveling down from the library above. Our little exploration group had separated a bit at this point and continuing into the tunnel to see what was on the other side was a bit daunting with the noises emanating from it, so I opted to back out of the room and continue further into the subway.
The old train beds now crossed the river at this point, on the lower level of the double decker bridge mentioned in the first entry. The light became good again, shining in from the arches on either side of the bridge.
The graffiti was still heavy, but becoming less and less sophisticated.
This bridge was a brief respite from the relative darkness behind us....
...and the real darkness which lie just ahead.
This is where things began to look more like what you expect a subway to look like. There were long tunnels leading into the darkness.
There were also still old train rails in the beds.
It wasn't long before we encountered a very large interior room, accessed on this end by a doorway.
We soon discovered that it was a huge receiving area for the newspaper building above us. According to the little I've read about the subway system, it was utilized well into the 1970's for bringing freight into the city, primarily reams of paper for a company which printed both morning and evening editions. From our vantage point at this end of the receiving area, this must've been the end of the line, with trains coming in from the other side, evidence by the large car bumper at the end of the rail.
And confirmed by the huge doorway at the other end of the room where the cars entered.
Between these two features of the room were the receiving doors themselves along the side of the rails, outfitted with dock plates for ramping in and out of boxcars.
The docks were completely accessible as well. Using the photo of the door with "Gannett Newspaper" from above, if you went around the corner of the wall to the left, there was a large open doorway which led to what looked like a small trucking dock and a set of steps leading onto the dock.
The dock ran the length of this area. In the photo below, the wall on the right side of the dock corresponds to the receiving doors facing the rails on the other side. On the left side, you can see the remnants of old doors which probably used to lead into the basement level of the newspaper building above, but have since been covered with cement block.
At the other end of the docks, was a long ramp leading out of it back into the main room.
Also here in the receiving area was another set of stairs leading to nowhere.
We continued on our journey into the subway tunnels. For the next mile or so, it was rather non-descript. Two rail beds ran parallel to each other separated by concrete columns. The tunnel was so large with respect to both width and length, taking any photos proved to be largely pointless. The only times they were even interesting is when we came to locations along the tunnel that appeared to have been stops from its days as a passenger transit rail. More of the stairs going to nowhere.
Or in the case of the following, remnants of it. You can see the railings are still attached to the wall and you can see the outline of where the stairs were once attached, probably wooden or metal. They went up from both directions on this side of the wall into a common entrance near the ceiling.
We soon came out the other side, where there were huge cross beams helping to support the elevated street above us.
It was here that I was afforded the opportunity to take the pretty amazing photo that I used as a teaser in the first entry.
Over by the concrete wall where the light was streaming down from was a rail bed leading out of the subway to street-level, in the general direction of some of the local industry.
The subway's rail beds continued maybe another hundred yards before dead-ending at a large chain-link gate. We opted for heading back up to street level on the side up a small driveway, thus ending our adventure.
It's a good thing we didn't start our adventure at this end. I doubt you can read it on the photo above, but there is a warning written on the concrete column just in the shadows that might have dissuaded us from venturing down there.
Nah. I don't think it would've made a bit of difference.
I took nearly 150 photos in the subway and around downtown Rochester that afternoon. If you're interested in seeing the entire set, you can check them out in my photo gallery.
x-posted to abandonedplaces and urban_decay.