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This NYC Subway Map tray is functional and durable for everyday use and attractive enough for your display cabinet; perfect as a centerpiece for your next party.
Known as the Tauranac-Hertz map, Michael Hertz Associates created the design and John Tauranac oversaw the transition to this NYC subway map in 1979.
Forgotten NY was the first recipient of the Outstanding NYC Website award by the Guides Association of NYC in March 2015! Forgotten New York is a program of the Greater Astoria Historical Society, a non-profit organization supported by the Long Island City community.
Subway design reached its apotheosis in the original 28 subway stations, designed by architects George Heins and Christopher LaFarge, engineered and built by William Barclay Parsons and opened to the public on October 27, 1904. In its original 1904 configuration, seen at left, the IRT subway had two stations at 42nd Street, at Grand Central and at then-newly renamed Times Square (formerly Longacre Square). While this is the original 1904 42nd Street-Grand Central station, it reveals little of its original pedigree, since the station, now the eastern end of the Times Square-Grand Central shuttle, has been renovated repeatedly over the years. When the New York Times moved here and built a massive tower, the area increased in importance and the station gained a new platform and signage.
It’s hard to fathom it now but there was no free transfer from the Shuttle to the BMT Broadway Line here until 1948 (this was a full 8 years after subway unification). On the block bounded by 7th Avenue, Broadway, and West 50th and 51st Streets you will find the old American Horse Exchange, dating from the late 1800s when this was a carriage trade hotbed. 50th Street uses the same typefont and amphora (two-handled jug used in ancient Greece and Rome) theme first seen at Astor Place (see Original 28 Part One). The original Arts and Crafts Grueby Faience ID plaques remind me of a game board, with bold colors and geometric shapes.
Columbus Circle has certainly seen its share of changes lately with the destruction of the old New York Coliseum and the construction of the 70-story twin-towered Time Warner Center. As we’ll see, the Columbus Circle station has undergone a number of changes over the years, among them being some loss of its original terra cotta and faience ornamentation. Much of Columbus Circle was compromised when the IND subway was built intersecting it along 8th Avenue in the 1930s. When first built, Columbus Circle had a number of faience name tablets using the same Goudy-esque type we have seen at Astor Place and 50th Street. A 1950s station extension has eliminated the older tile and mosaic, employing a bland sea-green scheme that is also used on uptown stations.
Lincoln Center is NYC’s premier performance space, with the Metropolitan Opera, Avery Fisher and Alice Tully Halls, the Juilliard, Vivian Beaumont and Walter Reade Theaters, among many other venues. When subway engineers ran the line up Broadway to what became the Lincoln Square neighborhood in 1904, it was inconceivable that there would be a grand entertainment mecca this far north. A complete overhaul in the early 1990s gave 66th Streetcompletely new signage and wall decoration. The shimmery, golden station mosaic is Nancy Speros’ Artemis, Acrobats, Divas and Dancers. Broadway’s most distinctive landmark in the vicinity of this station, the Ansonia Hotel, opened the same year the subway did. The station itself is most remarkable not for what is below ground, but on the surface in the two triangle-shaped plots created by Broadway, Amsterdam Avenue and West 72nd Street.
Known officially as a control house, as in fare control, this is one of a number of Heins and LaFarge-designed station houses that appeared in the early days of the subway, which, after all, is a railroad.
Not much in the way of ceramic signage here, just the ceramic cross with the street number. A weakness of the 72nd street station in the 1990s was that even though it was constructed as an express station, no free transfer was possible from uptown to downtown. The condition has been alleviated by the construction, in 2002, of a second control house and a realignment of the uptown local track. The new control house, considered a glass, brick and metal update of the original 1904 building, was executed by Gruzen Samton and Richard Dattner and Partners. Most of 79th Street (and the following station, 86th) has been redone in a quintessentially 50s bland, monotonous tile scheme, but there are still flashes of greatness here and there. Beginning at 79th Street we see a station ID scheme that would be repeated for most of the original Contract One stations going up to 145th Street (and one stop past, the 157th Street station built in 1905: the station number flanked by two cornucopias, um, cornucopiae, um, horns of plenty. At 86th and Broadway we find the twin-towered Montana Apartments, built in 1986 and named as a counterpoint to the Dakota, 14 blocks to the southeast. Most of 86th Street has been redesigned with bland tile (punctuated, however, with charming art pieces) but some 1904 elements are still here. The mosaic name tablet and other original elements that remain can be found at the southern end of the downtown station. Bland towers on Broadway above, but a very interesting Contract One station below, with something for everyone including closed platforms, ID plaques and skylight remnants. As with Brooklyn Bridge and 14th Street further down the line, side platforms originally served local trains.

Skylights from the platform shine through to the crossunder passage. They are reminiscent of early Contract One stations, which all has skylights to allow natural light into stations. Only an occasional rumble here reminds riders that Bronx-bound trains pass beneath this station‘s southern end. Early IRT mosaicists used great exactitude, along with a subtle color pallette of earth tones. The Grueby cartouche employs the swastika we first saw at 96th Street but dispenses with the flower theme. Since subway engineer William Barclay Parsons was a Columbia trustee, you can expect to see a lot of Columbia U. Looking north on Broadway as far as the eye can see from 116th Street in this 1905 postcard view. courtesy Thaddeus Wilkerson. This station features two separate ID cartouches, one with the station number and another featuring the seal of Columbia University. Riders new to the west side IRT will find it surprising to find themselves in bright sun, or at least natural light, at 125th Street when the train emerges from the tunnel onto a trestle high above Broadway. While the IRT was constructed to rise and fall with subtle topography changes, subway engineers were faced with a problem in Manhattan Valley: what to do to cross the deep rift at Manhattan (now 125th) Street?
Broadway here is nothing special, just a few storage lofts. You can spot an old Studebaker studio, recognizable by its wheel logo, on West 126th between Broadway and 12th Avenue.
The view to the west is impressive as it contains the Riverside viaduct, and on clearer days than this, views across the mighty Hudson to New Jersey. We are again in the tunnel, and we come to another prestige school at this station, City College of New York, worth a trip for a view of Shepard Hall from Amsterdam Avenue and 141st Street.
Fortunately a couple of station ID mosaic panels were preserved, though they seem totally out of place in the Jetsons-like rest of the station. The 28th station of the Original 28, 145th Street was the northern terminus on opening day, October 27, 1904. Los articulos originales de este blog estan bajo licencia Creative Commons by-nc-nd salvo que se explicite otra. Fantastic work from Transit Maps reader Arnorian showing the New York Subway, PATH and NJ Transit Lines on top of an aerial photograph of central New York City. Though not geographically accurate, the map includes streets and landmarks, allowing users to navigate from subway to aboveground locations. The original line ran from City Hall to 145th Street and is now a part of today’s #6 line, Times Square-Grand Central Shuttle, and #1 line.
By 1905 the subway was expanding into the Bronx; by 1908 it had reached Brooklyn, and expansion continued apace with the Seventh Avenue and Lexington Avenue lines as we know them today completed in 1918.
The lengthy passageway between this station and the main concourse at Lexington Avenue where there is a transfer to the #4, 5 and 6 was originally going to be a platform further east, but the plan was scrapped soon after construction. An entertainment mecca since the coming of the theatres in the early 1900s, the area had always had its seedy pockets, which are always tolerable in small doses, but they had come to completely dominate by the early to mid-1970s.
The platforms contained entrances to both the Times Tower and the Knickerbocker Hotel, each of which can still be detected today. The concourse that allows riders to transfer between the Shuttle, BMT Broadway, IRT Flushing, and IRT 7th Avenue lines has recently completed a lengthy reconfiguration, but the rest of this massive, labyrinthine station is apparently under perpetual construction.
When the station was renovated in 1993-1994 tile versions of the faience sign were installed that imitate the colors, but not the style. Edward Durrell Stone’s 2 Columbus Circle has been sold and will be drastically redesigned.
Much of the station was lost so a connection to the newer subway could be made, but ample room was also left because there was a plan to make Columbus Circle an express station and convert 72nd Street to local.
The semicircular faience was not duplicated elsewhere on this Contract One route, and this was a bad loss. Block after block of tenements lined the streets, which could be mean ones by the time West Side Story, set in the neighborhood, was written. Designers cleverly matched the typefonts and plaque design to original Grueby Faience specs.
In its early days our urban railroad received some handsome architectural elements to go with it (others at West 96th, 103rd, 116th and 145th Streets have disappeared while the ones at Bowling Green and Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn have survived. This was done because space in the control house was at a premium and the MTA was concerned about crowd control. Finally, uptown-downtown transfers were permitted; this is helpful in cases where local service is cancelled for trackwork. As you can see it allows a great deal of natural light to stream in, and especially on sunny days, it’s a very pleasant place to board a train.
There’s also the Starbucks where your webmaster met a blind date prompted to email him from his very first New York Times site review in 1999. North of 96th Street, a branch line was constructed that led to the northern reaches of the Bronx.

Originally, you entered from a fare control house in the Broadway center median (like at 72nd Street) but as Broadway traffic increased, it was considered unsafe to allow riders to enter there, so the headhouse was closed (it’s now a community center). This principle is again a part of new station construction proposed for the Fulton Center downtown on Broadway and at the new PATH station presently underway at Church and Dey Streets. This would be continued in later IRT and early BMT stations, but in the 1920s there was a color explosion with both BMT and IND construction employing brilliant yellows, blues and reds. John the Divine on Amsterdam and110th was begun in 1892, and the station opened in 1904, we may assume the street was granted the moniker sometime in the intervening years. The best way was to bridge the rift, then put the train back in a tunnel on the other side. The next station to the north, 157th, would open November 12th, while stations north of that were opened in 1906. While many new editions (featuring city updates, color changes, and temporary themes) have been released, the basic design is still in use. Until recently, columns could still be seen along the passageway, and the planned platform edges can still be seen in the present-day walkway. It took 20 years of condemnations and court battles to drive out the smut, but when it went, so did a lot of the crime. In 2001 and 2002, new art was commissioned for the station, including Roy Lichtenstein‘s Times Square Mural (seen in the distance at left). Notice the error on the tile version: The four squares surrounding the triangles should be green, not red. One of the caravels has a mosaic replacement — compare the two and see how the mosaic version stacks up to its older model.
The platforms flange out very wide in spots as space was left for this now-scrapped objective. Robert Moses was to raze a total of 18 square blocks to create Lincoln Center and public housing at the site, displacing 7,000 low-income apartments and replacing them with only 4400, according to Robert A.
The ones at Bowling Green have been removed in favor of an orange glazed brick covering installed in the early 1970s. Previously you had to travel to 96th Street to cross from uptown to downtown service in cases like that. An express track on the Broadway line running north from 96th Street has never, or rarely, been used for passenger service. These resemble the ones at Canal, Worth, Bleecker and Spring Streets in that the station letter or number is flanked by a pair of posies, tulips, in this case. Riders now enter from a short portion of the side platform where there are turnstiles, and cross under the tracks, using staircases. Indeed, soon after re-entering the tunnel, riders find themselves under Manhattan’s highest hills, and are required to board elevators to reach the street. Later, in 1988, the station got a further treatment with Steve Wood’s Fossils bas reliefs.
A representation like this shows that complexity and scale to full effect, and also looks quite breathtakingly gorgeous.
In special cases though, trains can still be switched, with some special maneuvers, between the Seventh and the Lex by using the shuttle tracks. At photo right, we see cylindrical columns with decorative plastering at the top and bottom.
Luminaries such as Arturo Toscanini, Flo Ziegfeld, Theodore Dreiser and Igor Stravinski have lived there. The university had occupied campuses near City Hall and also where Rockefeller University is now, on York Avenue in the East 60s.
Note the trolley tracks: some of them are still visible in the street on 12th Avenue (under the viaduct) and 125th Street (Martin Luther King Jr. Above is a Peter Dougherty map showing the track configurations that allow trains to do this. The plaques are surrounded by rosetts and, as we have seen at Astor Place and 50th Streets, the amphora motif. Two blocks away on Central Park West is the Dakota Apartments, a pioneer when built this far north in 1884. There are also simple versions of wall tapestries; more elaborate ones, as we will see, can be found a couple of stops later.

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