Nosy Neighbor: What Happens to Old Cobblestones?

I was watching today as more of the old cobblestones were ripped from my street and carted off to parts unknown. I wondered what New York City does with these 100?-year-old worn stones. The new ones that will replace them are, well, new, without the patina or character. I hope they don’t just end up in a landfill somewhere. Maybe you can get the dirt on them, so to speak. —R.

I once again called upon the city’s Department of Design and Construction for an answer. “When the contractors dig them out they become the contractors’ property,” said the official. “What usually happens is the contractors take them off site and clean them. Then they put back the ones that are usable.” The ones that aren’t usable, meanwhile, get discarded appropriately. Don’t get too upset: I’m sure the new stones don’t stay new-looking for long…. (UPDATE: There’s an interesting comment.)

Got a question? Email it to

Previous Nosy Neighbor posts:
Are buses allowed to idle on Laight?
What’s happening with the Verizon building?
Will the construction at Hudson and Laight ever end?
What is Esoteric on Walker Street?
What’s up with the building under renovation on Franklin?
Is N. Moore getting cobblestoned?
What are those orange awnings for?
What’s happening at 73 Warren?
Can you recommend any Tribeca picture books?
Why are those shuttles on Greenwich?
What’s coming to 15 Canal Street?
Who enforces sidewalk-café regulations?
What’s going on at 27 Desbrosses?
What happened to the Lilac?
When will those trailers on West Street go away?
Do you know anything about 20-24 Varick?
What’s happening to my parking lot?
Is Pier 26 being worked on again?
What’s up with Jin Market?
What are those black pellets on Pier 25?
What do the characters on 47 Vestry mean?
When is T.J. Maxx opening?
Where is the Special Forces monument going?
Who’s moving into 151 Hudson?
What’s going on at 172 Duane?
Where is Compose’s pastry chef cooking now?
What’s up with those Verizon carts?
Where was the original Blues Bar?
Who are the guys in the geeky pants?
Why are the windows above Ponte’s boarded up?
Can we walk on the West Street medians?
What’s going on in 157 Hudson?
What’s the new painting at 153 Hudson?
What’s up with 55 Warren/55 Murray?
What is this P.C. Richard & Son Theater I keep hearing about?
What’s the story behind the lights at 289 Church?
What’s the Dream House at 275 Church?
How come every every film and TV shoot seems to have a trailer with doors marked “Lucy” and “Desi”?



  1. Hmm, I’ll keep an eye out for my old stones, but I have never seen any replacements being put down on other streets that look even the slightest bit worn. I guess landmark status does not apply to the actual paving stones in the streets.

  2. landscapers sell cobblestones to homeowners
    to edge driveways etc
    used to be $10 each may be more now.

  3. Or, maybe they can be reused for a more modern purpose: