Went on a business trip. Saw some things.
Former GE building near my hotel, one of the most ridiculously art deco things I’ve ever seen, currently home to a high-end Chinese restaurant.
This is the cool part: at breakfast on Wednesday, my coworker Jerry told me he’d asked for a special tour of the abandoned “City Hall” subway station and that it was happening at lunch and did I want to go? (Hell yes.)
So I sprinted back to the hotel at my mid-morning break to get my camera, and we all met up in Grand Central. When we got on the 6, our tourguide knocked on the conductor’s compartment and kicked him out, and let all of us into the the compartment like a clown car, so we could take pictures out the front of the train as he drove it to Brooklyn Bridge.
After the Brooklyn Bridge stop, the car goes out of service and turns around at the old City Hall station, so the driver stopped the car there and we all got out and explored for half an hour. It’s a relatively small station — just a 6-car platform, and stairs up to a waiting room with a beautiful domed leaded glass ceiling. Apparently the glass over the platform in the center was replaced for the centennial celebration (in 2010) but they couldn’t replace the window over the track without putting the train line out of service for an unacceptably long period of time.
Our guide had a bunch of historical and personal anecdotes he obviously loves telling.
I really kind of want to throw a party there. and I can take no credit for the AMAZING lighting, we just arrived at the perfect moment.
First glimpse of the station around the bend…
The leaded glass over the platform was refurbished/replaced for the centennial of the station in 2010, but they couldn’t replace the stuff over the tracks without stopping the train line for multiple days, so they didn’t.