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a wide street or main thoroughfare.
a means of access or attainment:
avenues of escape; avenues to greater power.
a way or means of entering into or approaching a place:
the various avenues to India.
Chiefly British.

a wide, usually tree-lined road, path, driveway, etc., through grounds to a country house or monumental building.
a suburban, usually tree-lined residential street.

Contemporary Examples

To the musicians, the Napster co-founders were outright thieves, providing an avenue to steal music without paying a dime for it.
15 Years After Napster: How the Music Service Changed the Industry Alex Suskind June 5, 2014

No, over breakfast at the Empire Diner on 10th avenue and trust me, it’s a dream team.
Q and A with Tina Brown The Daily Beast October 4, 2008

A few days later, Mrs. Anderson attempted to ride in the whites-only car of the Eighth avenue railroad.
How a Racist Newspaper Defeated Lincoln in New York in the 1864 Election Harold Holzer May 1, 2013

Flooding in the enclave seemed to begin at avenue C and worsened moving eastward.
In Stuyvesant Town, Evidence of Hurricane Sandy’s Wrath Matthew DeLuca October 29, 2012

He was in their custody for three hours before arriving at the Fourth avenue jail.
Jail Death of Veteran Haunts Joe Arpaio, ‘America’s Toughest Sheriff’ Terry Greene Sterling June 2, 2012

Historical Examples

Rachel followed her, and they walked in silence down the avenue.
The Voyage Out Virginia Woolf

I cannot decide which way to turn to reach Fifth avenue again.
Ester Ried Yet Speaking Isabella Alden

But there are plenty of other women living miles from anywhere who know what’s being worn on Fifth avenue.
Fanny Herself Edna Ferber

Ask your future husband if he knows a girl at 213 —— avenue.
K Mary Roberts Rinehart

Hare walked down the avenue of cottonwoods and was about to turn the corner of the old forge when he stopped short.
The Heritage of the Desert Zane Grey


a broad street, often lined with trees
(capital as part of a street name) a road, esp in a built-up area: Shaftesbury Avenue

a main approach road, as to a country house
a way bordered by two rows of trees: an avenue of oaks
a line of approach: explore every avenue

c.1600, “a way of approach” (originally a military word), from Middle French avenue “way of access,” from Old French avenue “act of approaching, arrival,” noun use of fem. of avenu, past participle of avenir “to come to, arrive,” from Latin advenire “to come to,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + venire “to come” (see venue). Meaning shifted to “a way of approach to a country-house,” usually bordered by trees, hence, “a broad, tree-lined roadway” (1650s), then to “wide, main street” (by 1846, especially in U.S.).


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