About Us - The 2 Second Overview
The LTV Squad is an NYC based multidisciplinary group focused on exploring, photography, history and government accountability. We're the longest running team of explorers in NYC. We're also a niche publisher of photography & travel books - the proceeds of which keep this site online.
Some say we invented the modern day game of exploring tunnels in NYC. While there's some truth to that, we're really just carrying on tradition of exploring tunnels that dates all the way back to the day that the subways opened and people rushed into the tunnels to check them out. Tunnel exploring in NYC was a rarified hobby mostly of left to blue collar workers and foamers. Then in the 1970s graffiti artists took to the tunnels to paint trains. Today, a new breed runs the tunnels, not bent on painting - just exploring and seeing the hundreds of hidden sections to be found underground.
"LTV the ogs of this shit'
"LTV = Underground deities"
We've been in more abandoned buildings in NYC than anyone else. Period.
How many? 100, 500, 100? We lost count long ago.
These days there are few abandoned buildings in NYC. All of the old greats - Pepsi, Schwartz, Revere Sugar, Bush Terminal, Washburn Wire, BEDT, even Domino - have been leveled and replaced.
As the cycle of "development" continues, we keep an eye out for newly vacated locations to document before the inevitable bulldozer shows up.
Graffiti, Freights and Freedom
Graffiti and Exploring in NYC have been joined at the hip since the very beginning. Graffiti writers explored tunnels to find trains to tag, and industrial areas for buildings to practice painting in.
While we document this relationship, we also specialize in following graffiti on NYC's freight trains and tracks - an aspect of the hobby that was virtually ignored by photographers and blogs until we released 'Brooklyn Queens Freight' and 'Yard Job NYC'.
Intense documentation of the obscure. We perform deep dive research on the industrial history of NYC that is second to none, uncovering facts and stories that provide a unique view into the fabric of what made NYC the city that it is today.
We believe it is the responsibility of citizens to shape the city they desire to live in. We take on issues and get results. In 2005 we fought an effort by the MTA to ban photography within the transit system. In 2011 we fought for the reopening of the Willow Lake trail. When we pick up a cause, we don't stop pushing for it until there is a positive result.
As citizens paying some of the highest taxes in the world, it is our duty to demand government accountability wherever and whenever possible.
And as a group who's hobbys are often in violation of minor, outdated laws, it us up to us to mock these regulations and advocate for their complete removal wherever possible.
Read More Books
We often generate way more content on a subject than we can justifiably plop into a blog post. Sometimes we generate content that has little to do with the NYC-centered focus of this website. When this happens, we crank out books instead. The proceeds of these books go towards maintaining the website and covering the associated research costs.
All of our publications are 'print on demand', thus you won't find them in physical stores. Since most only sell a limited amount of copies, each will become a collectors item over time (most will be placed 'out of print' at an atribrary point to be determined).