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New Yorker Hotel-Secret Tunnel-Basement-Subway-34th Street-NYCFormer entrance under the New Yorker Hotel that provided direct access to Penn Station

Roughly 200 feet beneath the Wyndham New Yorker Hotel lies a secret: an underground tunnel that connected the establishment to Penn Station. It’s mostly forgotten, used primarily as storage, but it once enabled guests to go directly from the subway and trains to an elevator and up into the hotel. A porter would greet you at the entrance and take you the rest of your way. Direct access was popular for the luxury buildings of this time – the Woolworth Building and the Knickerbocker Hotel are other examples.

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168_Street_Station-Subway-Tacks_Overhead-Washington_Heights-NYC

When you Google the 168th Street Station, one of the top results is “168th street station creepy” and there’s a good reason for that. The Washington Heights station, where the 1 train stops, has been pretty decrepit for years. It was built as a grand station of the IRT subway, the first line in the city, with a tiled tunnel arch and vintage lanterns, it was badly in need of renovation. The exciting news is that the renovation is well underway and you can finally see some of the grandeur peeking through now that the ceiling is done. The contrast between old and rehabilitated is pretty striking and riders can finally get a glimpse of how impressive this station might have looked brand new.

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W Train-Subway-Revival-Second Avenue Subway-NYCPhoto via Wikimedia Commons by Adam E. Moreira

Recently, we reported that the MTA had added the Second Avenue Subway to the subway map. Part of the changes included the resuscitation of the W line from Astoria-Ditmars Blvd to Coney Island-Stillwell Avenue. The MTA aims to relieve train congestion and boost Astoria’s population, at an estimated cost of $13.7 million annually, according to a MTA press release.

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5.9 million people on average ride the MTA daily. That’s almost six million pairs of shoes walking up and down the hundreds of platforms that make up our beloved New York City subway, accidentally or purposefully dropping trash and more. Just imagine what is under every single sneaker, sandal, high heel, loafer and boot. It will take more than just a few Swiffer pads to get all of that out. So how does the MTA clean up the subways?

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Fulton Street-Vintage-Original Subway Exit to Street-Corinthian Columns-Bronze-NYC-2

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.

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Nevins Street-Abandoned Platform-Art Gallery-Show-Exhibit-Phil America-Subway Station-Brooklyn-NYCPhoto by Phil America

“Getting into this exclusive art gallery could literally kill you,” proclaims the headline of the New York Post article on a guerrilla art exhibit by Phil America located in the abandoned level of the Nevins Street subway station in Brooklyn. Curbed New York got the scoop first with an interview with Phil America, who says the police are already investigating the installation. For us, this is particularly exciting because photographs of the lower level of Nevins Street have been difficult to come by, until now.

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