3. The NYPD Has a Permanent Counterterrorism Unit

The NYPD’s largest ad-hoc force is its counterterrorism unit, made permanent in November 2015. The force, known officially now as the Critical Response Command unit, was planned to have about 5600 officers and was initially formed after the terror attacks in 2001. The timing of the announcement to make the unit permanent came a few days after the November attacks in Paris, but was not a response to them. Still, it highlighted the importance of dedicating a unit of officers to preventing terrorism, both homegrown and from abroad.

The counterterrorism unit is headquartered on Randall’s Island, in the former Street Crime Unit building of the NYPD. One of the places the unit has trained is in the lower abandoned level of the Bowery subway station.