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A photo of the 18th St long before it was abandoned (1905). Source: Glassian

The 18th Street subway station was originally on the IRT Line, formerly sandwiched between 14th St-Union Square and 23rd Street. After World War II, the Board of Transportation embarked on a platform extension program. The famous City Hall subway station was closed in 1945 because its curved platform could not accommodate the longer trains we see today.

Along this section of the IRT, not only were the platforms extended at 14th Street and 23rd Street, but new entrances were also built at 15th Street and 22nd Street. As a result of the close proximity, 18th Street was closed down in 1948. According to Joseph Brennan of Abandoned Stations, the underground stop was often used for publicity photos because it possessed no unusual features–except for a glass ceiling and decorative motifs designed by Heins & LaFarge, who also worked on the City Hall station. The sealed off station is easily visible when riding the 6 train (and 4, 5 trains if no local trains obstruct the view) between 14th Street and 23rd Street

Today however, with the usual signs of decay in the city’s subway system and layers of graffiti, it looks nothing like the pristine photograph above.

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-Steve DuncanPhotograph of 18th Street Subway Station by Steve Duncan/Undercity.org. Buy prints here.

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-6Photo by Undercitysun.com

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-4Photo by Undercitysun.com

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-2Photo by Undercitysun.com

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-3Ornamentation from the 18th Street Subway Station Photo by Undercitysun.com

18th Street Subway Station-IRT-6 Line-NYC-5Photo by Undercitysun.com

Read about more abandoned subway stations in NYC. Additional reporting by @untappedmich

1 Comment

  1. Kiwiwriter says:

    The original book “Angel Heart,” which became a horrific movie with Mickey Rourke and Robert De Niro, had a bunch of devil-worshippers sacrificing chickens in the 18th Street Station, because 6 plus 6 plus 6 was 18, or “666,” the “Number of the Beast.”

    And the station is on the 6 line, which adds to the mystery, I guess.

    When I heard about this, my pals and I would joke about Transit cops descending on the station to make sure the chicken had paid his subway fare.

    It also proved that the subway was run like hell and going to the devil.

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