Ten stories beneath the bustling platforms of Grand Central Terminal lies a basement so secret that had you ventured down their some years ago you would have risked being shot on sight. The trigger-finger guards on duty would have had no qualms about protecting the basement’s prized contents–a series of rotary converters–at all costs. But today, at a time when these converters have long since been shut off, the Science Channel has taken a bold journey down the freight elevator to this once strategic location in order to better understand its significance.
Several street names are repeated throughout NYC–sometimes more than twice. Why is this? New York has amassed its size through the annexation of smaller towns, the streets of which were laid out and named in similar ways to those on Manhattan. In some cases, the names were intentionally repeated for clarity’s sake, even if that doesn’t quite make sense today. We decided to round up all these confusing repetitions in the hopes that taking Rockaway Parkway to Rockaway Boulevard to Rockaway Point Boulevard on the way to Rockaway Freeway will be less confusing when all you wanted was a nice day at the beach. (more…)
Early construction of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine circa 1902. Image via Library of Congress
Today, it’s hard to imagine Morningside Heights without the flurry of students hurrying to class at Columbia University. It may be even harder to imagine it without some of its signature architecture: the gothic Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the largest cathedral in the world, Riverside Church, with its former bowling alley, or Grant’s Tomb along the Hudson River. But Morningside Heights got an exciting start in the history of New York City (and America, as it turns out)!
Nicholas Blechman, the art director for the New York Times Book Review has a really fun new series on landmark architecture as food, called Gastro-Architecture. While many of the drawings are from all around the world “The Gherkin” in London and “The Bottle Opener” in Shanghai, several are of New York City. The Apple Store as an Ice Cube, The Chrysler Building as orange wedges (aka “The Tropicana Tower,” The San Remo apartment towers on Central Park West as “Salt and Pepper Shakers, and “The Tostito,” a current project by Blarke Ingels for Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park.
We’ve got an exciting addition to our Untapped Cities event series this fall! We’re partnering with Chashama to offer 4 lucky readers a chance to win a free tour of the historic Brooklyn Army Terminal in Sunset Park on Saturday, September 20th (details to enter below). The terminal is four million square feet of history, which dates back to the days of World War I. It is also one of the most stunning architectural places in the city, open to the public only in the last few years.
Image via Tunnel Vision
Tunnel Vision, a new app created by NYU student Bill Lindmeier, gives users the opportunity to access real-time visual statistics by simply capturing the image of a New York City subway map on an iPhone. The stunning animations that bring these statistics to life though are worth checking out on their own.