Bonus #3 Secret Passageways to Grand Central
One of the most fascinating things we shared in our article on The Roosevelt Hotel is about a secret passageway below the hotel that once connected the hotel to Grand Central Terminal. While the hotel side of this tunnel has long been closed off, we recently discovered the forgotten other side which emerged into Grand Central.
The hotel, opened in 1924, was part of the second phase of Terminal City’s construction between 1920 and 1931 and included such buildings as the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, the Graybar Building, 277 Park Avenue (where JFK would have his campaign office) and more. This investment underground, and the extension of it as Terminal City expanded, makes sense. Reed & Stem, accompanied by engineer William W. Wilgus, imagined a much more extensive Terminal City — covering dozens of city blocks up Park Avenue. World War II put an end to that grand vision.