11/15/13, "The Story of Manhattan’s Rectangular Street Grid
," NY Times, Michael Pollak
|1754 NYC map|
"Q. When did Manhattan’s rectangular street grid first begin appearing?
“Manhattan in Maps: 1527-1995,” a 1997 book by Paul E. Cohen and Robert
T. Augustyn, reproduces and discusses a map of the city in 1754 [above] that was prepared by Francis Maerschalck, who had a long career
as the city surveyor. It shows three areas of new growth: the area just
north of the modern site of the World Trade Center; the section that
would become Little Italy, just north of Canal Street; and a group of
blocks to the southeast, by the East River.
The two new sections north of Canal and along the East River appear to
have been the earliest instances of the systematic development of land
for profit, the writers said.