Your Transportation Guide to the Upper West Side

  Last modified on January 16th, 2020

Upper West Side transportation options are one of the things that make it such an in-demand neighborhood.  The Upper West Side is directly connected with the rest of the city thanks to an intricate network of bus and subway stops that can be found on almost every block of the neighborhood. Read below for information on Upper West Side transportation choices, including exits and entrances of the major public routes. The guide also contains an overview on the West Side Highway for those who rely on a car for their daily commute.

Prefer to avoid public transportation?  Here is a guide to alternate side parking in NYC. And if you don’t have a car, here are some car rentals on the Upper West Side.

Also check out this Washington Heights transportation guide.


West Side Highway

West Side Highway

The main road that runs through the neighborhood while bordering the Hudson River is the West Side Highway. It stretches from West 72nd Street all the way down to the southern point of the city.

The highway forms part of the New York State Route 9A and is officially named the Joe DiMaggio Highway after the iconic New York Yankees player who resided in the neighborhood.

The West Side Highway was completed in 2001 after city planners decided to get rid of the previous Elevated Highway. However, soon after the highway opened it had to be shut down due to damage caused by the 9/11 attacks.

It comes with six lanes, offers scenic views of the New Jersey skyline, and travels by the Meatpacking District, West Village, and Midtown West. You can take the Lincoln Tunnel entrance on Exit 5 or enter from 179th St. if you head southbound. The highway offers an exit at Riverside Drive South and 179th Street in Washington Heights, and continues on to join the Henry Hudson Parkway.

If you don’t have a car and prefer to be environmentally friendly, there are plenty of public Upper West Side transportation options that will take you right to your destination in a matter of minutes.



M104 Bus

There are bus stops on every block of the neighborhood making it extremely easy to get on with your day without having to go out of the way. Here’s a quick guide explaining the different bus routes that either start, end, or simply pass through the Upper West Side on their way to Harlem, Chelsea, and other areas in the city.


This particular route starts at Washington Heights by West 178th St. and Broadway and then heads to South Ferry between Whitehall St. and South St. on its way down from Broadway, Riverside Drive, and West 72nd St. The M5 also stops at the George Washington Bridge Bus Station by 178th St.


Goes from Harlem at West 147th St. and Adam Clayton Powell Blvd all the way to Chelsea by 14th Street and 6th Avenue. It passes through Amsterdam Avenue northbound and Columbus Avenue while heading south as the route continues on to Manhattan Avenue at 106th St and then proceeds to stop by Lenox Avenue.


The M10 will take you from Harlem right by the Frederick Douglass Boulevard and West 159th St. down to Columbus Circle by Broadway and West 57th St. as it makes it way through Central Park West.


Starts at the West Village between Bethune St and Hudson St at Abingdon Square and ends in Harlem by West 133rd St and Broadway. The M10 stops by Riverside Drive, West 135th St, Amsterdam Ave, Columbus Ave, 9th Ave, and turns west on 135th St as well as north on Riverside Drive.


From the West Village at 8th Avenue and Jane St at Abingdon Square to Columbus Circle while also traveling through West 14th St, West St, 12th Ave and West 57th St.


Starts on Harlem by West 129th St and Amsterdam Ave and then goes to Times Square at 42nd St through Broadway and 8th Ave. The route goes north on Broadway and ends on the Upper West Side and turns at 125th St. The M104 also loops around Amsterdam Ave, 129th St, Convent Avenue, and 125th St.


This routes takes passengers from the South Ferry stop at Whitehall St and South St all the way to Lincoln Center by West 66th St and Broadway.


Travels right through the Upper West Side from West 72nd St. and Broadway to East Midtown with stops on York Ave, E 60th St, West End Ave and 57th St.


Starts on Upper West Side by West 66th St and West End Ave and ends on the Upper East Side between York Ave and E 67th St.


From the Upper West Side by Freedom Place and W 68th St and travels to the other side of Central Park by York Ave and E 72nd St to end on the Upper East Side.


Starts right in the heart of the Upper West Side by Riverside Drive and W 79th St and stops on the Upper Wast Side by East End Avenue and E 79th St.


Starts on 86th and West End, ending in Yorkville by 92nd and York Avenue.


This route starts on 96th and West End.  It will take you to Yorkville by 1st Ave and E 97th St.


From East Harlem by East 106th St. and FDR Drive to the Upper West Side by taking West 96th St and West End Ave.



96th Street Subway Station

The primary subway service on the Upper West Side consists of local train 1 and express trains 2 and 3. The three trains stop at 72nd St. and 96th St. while the 1 also makes a stop by Columbus Circle and Lincoln Center, as well as 79th St, 86th St, 103rd St, 110th St, 116th St, and 125th Street.

The neighborhood also comes with the service of trains A, B (weekdays only), C, and D. The A and D trains mostly stop at Columbus Circle and 125th Street by St. Nicholas Avenue. The B and C trains are local. They make stops at 59th St, 72nd St, 81st St, 86th St, 96th St, 103rd St, 110th St, 116th St, and 125th St.

The subway station at 81st Street is located right by the Museum of Natural History. It features visually stunning murals that transform an otherwise traditional commuter platform into a work of art.


For more details on Upper West Side transportation, and all of NYC, check out

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