squire j. vickers

Midtown, Policy, Transportation

Image via Wiki Commons

The day after Mayor de Blasio and Governor Cuomo announced plans to review and remove controversial public Confederate structures and markers throughout the city, the MTA says it will do the same. Well, sort of. Over 90 years ago, station architect Squire J. Vickers installed mosaics resembling the Confederate flag at the 40th Street entrance for the 1, 2, 3 trains to honor early New York Times owner and publisher Adolph S. Ochs, who had “strong ties to the Confederacy” and was buried with a Confederate flag when he died in 1935. But yesterday, MTA spokesperson Kevin Ortiz told Gothamist, “These are not confederate flags, it is a design based on geometric forms that represent the ‘Crossroads of the World’ and to avoid absolutely any confusion we will modify them to make that absolutely crystal clear.”

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History, maps, Transportation

Map by vanshnookenraggen.com via Reddit.

We know the crowds that pack into our city’s subway cars each day are more than colorful enough, but the system also has a super-geeky color-coded navigation system that exists even outside of the main map’s primary colored lines.

The city-owned Independent Subway was opened between 1932 and 1940. Up until 1967, it was the last of three former competing subway systems, and contributed six major lines to what is now the unified New York Subway: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, Q (partial). Squire J. Vickers, the system’s architect, designed a special color coding system for each station. Color coded stations were then grouped between express stations to make riders aware of the zone they were passing through. At each express station, the color of the tiles would change. Some station tile color patterns have been altered with subsequent renovations. The system map is based on the original color coding sheet from 1930. After WWII, almost all new subway stations featured their own unique architectural designs and colors

Find out what color your stop is


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