Snowmen in front of the Flatiron Building
Snowmen in front of the Flatiron BuildingGabriella Salpeter

New York was all set for one of the worst winter snowstorms in its history, with an emergency declared on Monday, but the brutal blizzard failed to pan out and on Tuesday travel bans were lifted in New York and New Jersey.

Several north-eastern states declared an emergency situation after up to three feet of snow were predicted on Monday, with those estimates later revised.

But apparently New York City was spared because the storm shifted east, and most of the city only got a mere ten inches of snowfall, less than half the predicted amount.

That doesn't mean there wasn't a large amount of snow - Connecticut got over 20 inches of snow, and Massachusetts over 26 inches, and Long Island was hardest hit in the New York region.

With the lift of the travel ban on Tuesday morning, transit services also returned in the metropolitan center.

The New York Times noted it was the first time the New York subway system had closed for snow in its 110-year history. Heavy rainstorms have in the past flooded the aging system, and officials claimed the closure could limit damage.

Following the relatively light snowfall, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio defending the emergency declarations and travel bans, saying "would you rather be ahead of the action or behind? I will always err on the side of safety and caution."

"This is a better-safe-than-sorry scenario," he said, adding "we did what was necessary to keep everyone safe."