Undercity: New York City Urban Exploration

Undercity: New York City Urban Exploration

2011, Society  -   27 Comments
Ratings: 8.41/10 from 37 users.

As an urban historian and photographer Steve Duncan tries to peel back the layers of a city to see what's underneath.

From the tops of bridges to the depths of sewer tunnels, these explorations of the urban environment help him puzzle together the interconnected, multi-dimensional history and complexity of the great metropolises of the world.

Erling Kagge, a 47-year-old Norwegian adventurer, had ascended Mount Everest and trekked on foot to both the North and South poles.

The two of them forged a new frontier: an extended exploration of the subterranean city, during which they lived inside the subsurface infrastructure, sleeping on the trail, as it were.

"The opportunity to see New York in a way no one else has, from the inside out, is, for me, as inspiring as walking to the poles and climbing Everest," - Mr. Kagge.

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27 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Nuno

    I’m a New Yorker and this was a ride.. thank you for sharing this keep it up and stay safe. Thrilling to say the least

  2. Steve harding

    Was a good little documentry but I've seen òne like it,about underneath instantanbul, that was brilliant

  3. james

    great way of giving bombers a places to uncover and give not so nice people ideas to hide there bombs stupid and he should be jailed ..

  4. Caroline Fifi

    I love Steve's curiosity but I was nervous about him being caught through the whole film!!

  5. phillus

    what's the bridge called he climbs up?

    1. batvette

      Think it said the "Williamsburg" Bridge.

  6. bronxflash

    i've hit some of this stuff growing up or know people who have. not to take anything away from this guy as he gets props, but city kids have been doing this s*it for years but now it's a 'thing.' some did it for graffiti fame hitting the out of the way spots, some just for fun. also, for the record, if i was doing the bridge, i might bring my own double tie-off harness which i have at home from working as an ironworker in nyc. it couldn't hurt.

  7. michael golia

    hey steve , can use ya over at my place , if youd like to explore all the junk under my bed , havent looked in years , never know what you might find :-o

  8. mferner

    i say "congratulations" and a damn fine job all around. it's not something i'd have the nerve to do but i'm glad someone does. particularly liked the interviews with the tunnel residents. the bridge climb gave me the willies sitting here in my living room.
    thank you for being an aware, caring human being and for bringing the world something unique.

  9. pwndecaf


    1. bronxflash

      you think this is pointless? really?

    2. pwndecaf

      I didn't think I could be more clear or succinct. What did you find puzzling about my statement? How could I have improved my review? If something is thought pointless, does it matter why?

    3. bronxflash

      i think it may not be for you but it's hardly pointless. i'm surprised you cannot see how someone can enjoy this. to each his own, i'm not going to debate this.

    4. pwndecaf

      I didn't ask for a debate.

    5. bronxflash

      so we're good

    6. Gata16

      Hmm...don't you find exciting looking at NY from different perspectives? Don't you find mind blowing to know how much history lie underneath our feet? How many stories, dreams, and treasures we could find...This film was thrilling!

  10. henrymart81

    loved it.

  11. Paul MacLeod

    Watching this makes me think of Mary Kings Close and the other hidden streets underneath Edinburgh. I'd love a chance to be able to explore them. They were either built ontop of many times to allow the city to expand or sealed up to prevent the plague from spreading.

  12. CyberDog Breath

    @Richard T: Perhaps you mean to ask, if he lived long enough to make it through another amateur documentary. As interesting as the information is, the methods of him acquiring the information, is dangerous and downright stupid.

    1. darkaaron

      People do this all the time. It's a fairly popular hobby. There's people that do way more dangerous stuff than this.

  13. maddest max

    I applaud this documentary, but only for its darwinian merits, Although I won't applaud too loudly as I imagine it must be fairly traumatic to hear that your idiotic thrill seeking loved one accidentally jumped out of the gene pool after being inspired by this.

    1. jp

      big words. now go pick up our garbage.

    2. maddest max

      Gladly, I hate to see a mess, and while I am doing this, please feel free to go play in the subway. Try not to leave a mess down there as I'm a bit squeamish when it comes to picking up body parts (hope I didn't use too many long words for you).

  14. Richard T

    anyone know if this guy has made any more documentaries about urban exploration? This one was far too short, but very good.

    1. Sieben Stern

      There's a series out about going under old buildings and into ruins - not by the same guy but in europe, italy, etc. The name is escaping me, though >_<

    2. consolecowboy

      this guy has a series, its called UNDERCITY. I think it is on VICE.