July 2, 1925: Electrification!
Seen as a major improvement & an enticement of commerce in Eltingville, the Civic League sponsored a colorful event at the Eltingville Train Station on the first day that the Tottenville Branch of the Staten Island Rapid Transit Railroad went electric.
The promise of fast, reliable transportation spurred on the greatest Land Grab on Staten Island. Consortiums, Associations, Corporations and private individuals snatched up as much land as they could in order to provide housing for the expected thousands of families that would move to Staten Island for some “Country Living”.
The Eltingville Business District sprouted around (as they are wont to do) the Train Station, where the greatest concentration of people would be found. More people means more businesses means more money to be made.
It was also at this time that the plans were made to widen Eltingville Lane — now Richmond Ave, from 50 feet to 100.
Did you know? The stretch of what we now call Richmond Ave, from Arthur Kill Road to Amboy Road was once known as the Plank Road; wooden planks served as the road surface to alleviate the muddy ruts and bone-jarring rides commonly found on the uneven surfaces on dirt roads of Staten Island.