Grand Central got a questionable makeover yesterday when one half of the retro Departures board was switched to digital displays. The controversial upgrade has been in the works since March and is part of Metro-North’s Way Ahead initiative which will replace the station’s gate boards, digital track indicators, departure monitors and platform displays with a new, modern system that promises brighter, easier-to-read, and more accurate displays that can help curb congestion in the busy terminal.
Grand Central Terminal
Grand Central’s Main Concourse Clock, via Wikimedia Commons
For more than a century, millions of New Yorkers have been meeting “under the clock,” that great rendezvous point – and focal point – of Grand Central Terminal. The clock, which has presided over Grand Central’s Main Concourse since the Terminal opened in 1913, has stood out amidst the swirl of commuters and the flow of time, witnessing reunions of friends and lovers, beginning countless adventures, and playing a priceless role in the life of the city. Or, nearly-priceless. It turns out that appraisers from Sotheby’s and Christie’s have valued the four-sided brass masterpiece at between $10 and 20 million!
Image: Jennifer Rotner via Flickr.
Developer TF Cornerstone and investment firm MSD Partners have announced plans to purchase and tear down the Grand Hyatt building adjacent to Grand Central Terminal, the Wall Street Journal reports. The hotel brand will eventually return to the site in a form different from the smoked glass-clad building that was Donald Trump’s first major Manhattan development. In its place will rise a mixed-use project that includes 2 million square feet of high-octane office space. The planned development is one of four new towers in the works as a result of a 2017 Midtown East rezoning aimed at encouraging new office buildings as well as infrastructure improvements in the east side business district.
It was announced today that a $60.2 million contract to build the project that will bring the Long Island Rail Road service to Grand Central Terminal was awarded to construction and development company Skanska. The award represents the final heavy civil contract in the MTA’s largest largest capital project and one that marks the first expansion of the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) in over 100 years.
Photo via Wiki Commons
The MTA recently purchased Grand Central Terminal for $35 million, a deal which gave the agency more control over development projects happening at the landmark. And in one of their first orders of business, it looks like they’re mulling a massive undertaking to replace the train shed roof, according to Crain’s sources. The shed is a two-level-deep underground space comprised of tracks, bridges, and viaducts used to stage and store Metro-North cars. It runs north of the terminal to East 57th Street and takes up an area larger than 20 football fields. Not only would the project cost hundreds of millions of dollars and take 20 years to complete, but Crain’s notes that it would likely result in many Midtown streets being ripped up.
Image via HBO
After a slight delay, limited edition “Game of Thrones”-themed MetroCards will be available starting today at Grand Central Terminal. The MetroCards are part of a larger #ForTheThrone campaign in anticipation of the series’ final season debuting sometime in April 2019. The MTA partnered with HBO for the “Game of Thrones” takeover at Grand Central, which includes more than 150 promotional posters that will remain at the station through Dec. 23, as Gothamist reported.
Of all Grand Central‘s amazing architectural feats and quirky secrets, nothing is more iconic than its famously backward celestial ceiling. So when Sunset Park-based Five Boroughs Brewing Co. started thinking about their next brew, they decided to pay homage to this work of art. “We may be biased, but to us, New York City is the Center of the Universe,” Five Boroughs told 6sqft. “This beer pays homage to the beautiful ceiling at Grand Central Terminal and this amazing city we are lucky to call home.”
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is set to purchase Grand Central Terminal for $35 million, a deal which will give the agency more control over development projects happening at the space. Expected to be approved by the MTA’s full board Thursday, the sale ends the 280-year lease that began in 1994 and gave the agency a one-time window to buy the station. Along with the famed terminal, the sale also includes miles of track on Metro-North’s Harlem and Hudson lines.
Grand Central Terminal is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its retail renovation; the iconic terminal’s shops and restaurants will be offering 1998 pricing on select products and menu items on October 1. Participating businesses include Cafe Grumpy, The Campbell Bar, Grand Central Oyster Bar and Restaurant, Moleskine, Dyptique and many more. In addition, there will be a special exhibition in Vanderbilt Hall celebrating the terminal’s storied 105-year history.
Grand Central Terminal Lobby via Wikipedia
On June 26th, 1978, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a momentous decision that wouldn’t just save a cherished New York landmark, it would establish the NYC Landmarks Law for years to come. This drawn-out court battle was the result of a plan, introduced in the late 1960s, to demolish a significant portion of Grand Central Terminal and erect a 50-story office tower.
Though the proposal may seem unthinkable now, it wasn’t at the time. Pennsylvania Station had been demolished a few years earlier, with the owners citing rising costs to upkeep the building as train ridership sharply declined. The NYC Landmarks Law was only established in 1965, the idea of preservation still novel in a city practicing wide-scale urban renewal. Finally, Grand Central wasn’t in good shape itself, falling apart, covered in grime, and home to one of the highest homeless populations in New York City. But a dedicated group of preservationists–aided by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis–took the fight to the highest levels of the court. Keep reading to find out how, as well as learn about the celebrations planned by the MTA surrounding the anniversary.