Originally Posted by tovangar2
The photo is
amazing. I don't think I've ever seen those steps before. That's 2nd St running across the lower margin, right? Intersecting with a street that's not there anymore? And 1st Street runs along the bottom of the steps?
There's the substation. The DWP took over the whole street (Boylston?).
The Upp Apartments appear on the Baist maps. The 'old' substation is labeled "Edison Electric Light Plant" on the 1910 map. The street through the middle was part of Boylston, which continued beyond the stairs.
By 1914, the 'old' substation had gone and the 'new' one was just labeled "Electric Light Plant". Note that on both of these maps, the part of Second Street west of Boylston was called Lake Shore Avenue. It gets renamed to Second Street by the 1921 map.
Here's another view looking towards the Upp Apartments which USC dates at 1937. The new substation appears to be covered in ivy. USC also have a similar image
from 1937 looking at a slightly different angle.
USC Digital Library
The higher part of Boylston is still visible on the 1994 view at Historic Aerials, and I think the stairs may even still be there, but nearly all the buildings have gone. By 2003, all traces of the Bixel and Boylston Streets between W 1st and Colton Street have been removed, and there's a large building along 1st Street where the stairs used to be. I don't know what it was, but it's not the building that's there now.