The Building of Yorkship Village
Excerpts from Yorkship News, the newsletter of New York Shipbuilding Corporation, and the NYSB Photography Department
|April 30, 1919
TROLLEY LINE TO VILLAGE IN OPERATION
Landscape Gardening and Tree Planting Well Advanced and Street Building Also Well Under Way
To the men who live in and those that are contemplating moving to Yorkship Village, the news that the cars are now running to and from there will be very welcome. The service was started Monday mornng, April 14th.
By special arrangement the cars will run directly from the village to the loop here at the yard, in the morning in time to get the men to work, both for the yard and office. In the evening they will return from the loop to Merrimac Avenue and Collings Road, Yorkship Village, accommodating the yard and office force also. Later, say 90 days, the line will be extended from Merrimac Avenue to Mt. Ephraim Pike.
Throughout the remainder of the day the cars run on a twenty-minute schedule, from Broadway & Warren Street, Gloucester, to Merrimac and Collings Road, in the village, with a six-cent fare and an additional one cent for a transfer. When the cars run directly from the village to the loop, or vice versa, the fare will be only six cents.
Favored by the recent mild weather, the work of completing Yorkship Village has been progressing very rapidly. Many of the large trees in the center square and other trees in the common and along the main streets have been planted, in addition to which great quantities of shrubbery have been placed. All of which had the effect of materially changing the general aspect of our town. On April 12th the contract for the construction of streets, sidewalks, and curbing was signed and awarded to the Hugh Nawn Co., with the proviso that the work must be completed in 150 calendar days. The approximate cost of this work will amount to $460,000, and the actual work of building the streets was started on Monday morning, April 14th. All the streets will be of concrete.
The contract for the Morgan Boulevard Bridge over Newton Creek likewise has been awarded, and this work, it is expected, will be finished by the first of June. By that time, too, all exterior and interior construction work at the village extension is expected to be completed, and before the lapse of many more weeks Yorkship Village should begin to receive its population and present the aspect of the splendid town it is going to be when all the work is done.
The question has often been asked, How many people live in Yorkship Village? At this writing it is estimated that there are at least 2200 persons, including men, women and children, residing in Yorkship Village, and when the Village is fully occupied the population will be at least 7500 persons.
In order to meet the requirements of the Village a number of families have organized a Union Sunday-school and Church. The attendance at the organization was thirty and on the second Sunday it was ninety. Services are being held on Sunday in the Gymnasium Building. The Baptists are letting contracts for the erection of a beautiful church building on a corner. Plans are now being considered for the erection of a Catholic Church, while the Lutherans have agreed to begin the erection of a building before April 1st.
All the stores in Yorkship Village are rented. One of the large stores in the square will be occupied by Mr. L.R. Strong, as a modern and up-to-date drug store. The equipment for this store will cost approximately $10,000, and will be the last word in modern store facilities. The other store will be occupied as a ladies and gentlemens furnishing store, selling things that are required in (continued on last page)
2824 Idaho Road, 1920
From Farm to Town in a Year
Toward the end of March, 1918, a tract of land comprising 197 acres, bounded by Newton Creek on the southeast, a branch of Newton Creek on the northwest, and Mt. Ephraim Pike, was being farmed as it had been since the settlement of the country.
Some twelve months later or, to be exact, the early part of April of this year, a town of some 1700 houses had been erected on what was formerly potato and corn fields. And at the present writing this new community, Yorkship Village, has a population of some 2200 people.
With the gradual completion of streets and lawns and the improved lot area, there has been an increasing number of visitors to the village and for several weeks past houses have been rented at a very fast rate. As many as thirty-five, for instance, have been taken in one single day. The fifty-six apartments, too, the existence of which had not been generally known, have been attracting much attention, not the least by the exceptional size of the rooms , and not a few of the prospective residents were divided as whether to take a house or an apartment.
Those living at the present time in the village as well as their visiting friends have noted the recent improvement in the transportation facilities and not a few are taking advantage of the nearness of the West Collingswood Station, where twenty-seven trains a day, in either direction, give good opportunity for a quick trip to Philadelphia and return. The social activities of the new community have kept pace with the increased number of residents and, as was to be expected, the big recreation field more or less forms the center of these entertainments and affairs. Not only may any evening, athletes be seen training on the cinder track, but the spectators will as well be sure to find a baseball game or two under way, while the tennis courts, near the gymnasium, are being frequented by an increasing number of devotees of the sport.
A comprehensive idea about the full extent of Yorkship Village as a single housing project may be gathered from the following facts contained in the statistical report now made public for the first time. Of the 197 acres comprising the total gross area of the tract, 80.41 acres represent the improved lot area including all blocks where abutting streets have been improved. The street area follows next with a total of 52.78 acres, while the area reserved for playgrounds ranks third with 22.32 acres, and 7.62 acres representing the space reserved for parks. For the school a space of (continued on page 15)
Newton Creek Bridge construction, 2 June 1919
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