flowzim_11.jpgWith construction set to begin yet again on the 2nd Avenue subway, the Times takes a look at the "subway car of tomorrow", the R11, which was built in anticipation of being used on the 2nd Avenue line once the line opened. As we all know, the line was never finished, so the ten cars with porthole window in the doors, were scattered to compatible trains around the system.

The gleaming stainless steel cars, the first stainless steel cars on the system, were delivered to the New York Board of Transportation in 1949. The cars featured many technological improvements such as fluorescent lighting, under-seat heaters, and an air purification system that pulled air from outside the train, rain it through electrostatic filters to remove dust and under ultraviolet lights to kill germs. The plastic wicker seats sat up to 54 passengers.

The car interiors lost much of their interior design when they were gut renovated in 1964. Nine of the cars were scrapped in 1976. One car, the 8013, made its way to the Transit Museum, one of Gothamist's favorite places to visit in the city.

R11 Car 8013 at the New York Transit Museum by Flowizm on Flickr.