Fulton Center may be still sparkly new since 2014, with improved connections underground between the numerous subway lines there, a new oculus art piece, and an interior retail space, but you can still find some remnants of an earlier era inside. On the downtown platform of the 4/5 lines, you’ll find an old exit, beautifully ornamented in the style of yesteryear.
The Neoclassical frame shows signs of aging while the somewhat loose cinderblock wall behind gives hint that this was once a rather grand exit to the street, as the engraved sign proclaims. Fluted Corinthian and engaged columns sit below a detailed lintel.
The platform exit is clearly related to the architecture of 195 Broadway, the building above the 4/5 line. The building, constructed in 1916, was the originally the headquarters of American Telephone and Telegraph and Western Union. The exit along Day Street has a similar feel:
Until the Fulton Street renovation, this was still a functioning exit, as seen in the below photograph:
Photo circa 2011 by Ephemeral New York
Explore this and more on our upcoming tour of the past, present and future of the NYC subway system, including a docent-led tour of the spectacular Lowline Lab, a look inside the new World Trade Center Transit Hub by Santiago Calatrava, a quasi-abandoned station once dubbed as the “Grand Central of downtown,” and more. Tickets are sold out for this weekend’s tours, but spots are still open in June: