Madison Square Garden has been an entertainment institution in New York City since 1879. Since that time, four separate buildings have held the title, including one designed by famous architect Stanford White with a garden rooftop theater (where he eventually met his demise). The Madison Square Garden we know today was built in 1968 on the site of the original Penn Station. Over the past several years, the venue has undergone a $1 billion renovation which brought in a new bridge level that runs high above the event floor, a remodeled 7th Avenue entrance, a state-of-the-art scoreboard, and other new upgrades, but a small part The Garden remains as it was in 1968. The 1968 North and South Corridors are a subtle nod to the past, hidden in plain sight. If you are an Untapped New York Insider, you can join us for a free All Access Tour on November 17th where we will make a special stop to see these hallways.

The 1968 North and South Corridors serve as time capsules within the modernized venue. The corridors appear as they would have looked when the “new Madison Square Garden” opened back in 1968. The concrete block walls, floors and round overhead lighting are all the same as they were more than fifty years ago.

A unique feature of the hallway is the selection of vintage advertisements that line the walls. The ads were pulled from the Garden archives, and they give a glimpse into the venue’s past. Walking along the hallway you will see posters for Garden events such as a boxing match between Emile Griffith and Nino Benvenuti, an ad for Bethlehem Steel which was used in the construction of The Garden, an ad for Budweiser, and more.

The Garden actually has a few spots where it pays homage to its past. Another place where you will find a nod 1968 is in The Blue Seats section in the upper balcony of the arena, behind the Rangers goal. The light blue color of the seats in this section is the color all of the seats were in 1968. Visitors to The Garden can also relive historic events by checking out the Defining Moments displays in the concourse, which highlight such events as the Pope’s visit in 2015. Also, ringing the ceiling around the concourse is Garden 366, a retrospective look at some of the most momentous events of The Garden’s 140 year history, one moment for every day of the calendar year.

The 1968 Corridors are used for entry and exit to events, so the next time you are attending a concert or game, be sure to look around. You can also see the hallways on a free MSG All Access Tour for Untapped New York Insiders where we will make a special stop that is not usually part of the tour route. The MSG All Access Tour takes visitors behind-the-scenes to areas usually inaccessible to the public. Depending on the events taking place each day, visitors may see areas like the Knicks and Rangers locker rooms, a backstage dressing room, A VIP Suite, or even put their feet on The Garden floor. MSG All Access tours are offered everyday from 9:30am through 4:00pm. If you are an Untapped New York Insider, you can join us for a free All Access tour on November 17th. Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to free behind-the-scenes tours and special events all year long!

REGISTRATION: Opens Monday, November 4th, 2019 at 12PM EST Already a member? Book here when registration opens!

Next, check out The Top 10 Secrets of Madison Square Garden in NYC and Vintage Photos: The Many Lives of NYC’s Madison Square Garden

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One thought on “Inside the 1960s Hallway Preserved in Time at Madison Square Garden

  1. Take another look at the boxing ad. In the story, you said the poster indicated Griffith and Frazier were going to fight each other. Although they are listed next to each other, you’ll notice both have “vs” underneath their names, indicating they had separate opponents, not each other.

    The smaller print below the names also shows Griffith and Frazier were in different weight classes, so it would be highly unusual for them to fight each other.

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