End of the Line: World Trade Center

1 World Trade Center at the terminus of the E train
1 World Trade Center and the Financial District from above

The last stop on the E train ends up at one of the world’s most crucial financial centers. The city that we know today grew rapidly from when the Dutch first arrived in New York in the early 1600s, naming it New Amsterdam. The streets that are now completely drowned out by skyscrapers and office buildings were once the core of the New York City everyone knows today. The sheer amount of historical landmarks make it a popular attraction for tourists wanting a reminder of the way New Yorkers lived in the past.

Passengers coming out of the labyrinth of underground walkways and connection tunnels can take the main exit out to the Oculus Center. The large terminal structure serves as both a transportation hub for commuters looking to take the subway or PATH trains and as a shopping center. The roof of the complex was specially designed to let in as much natural light as possible, specifically in autumn as a tribute to those killed in the September 11th attacks. The structure was opened in 2015 and has attracted quite a few visitors since then.

The Oculus at the terminus of the E train
Transportation hub in the Oculus

The Oculus’s western exit opens visitors up to the site of the former World Trade Center complex that has been transformed into the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. The foundations of the former towers were transformed into reflecting pools with each victim’s name etched into the stone around the perimeter of each foundation. The museum features a number of artifacts found in the rubble on September 11th, including an entire firetruck, steel beams, equipment, and a staircase recovered from one of the towers. Over 45 million people have visited both the memorial and museum since its opening in 2014, with the sites honoring all the people who suffered on that day.

Coming out on the east side of the Oculus leaves you within walking distance of some significant historical sites in Lower Manhattan. Trinity Church located on Broadway and Pine Street is over 200 years old and was the tallest structure in the United States until 1869. The Federal Reserve Bank Building, the House of Morgan, and the New York Stock Exchange are also popular symbols of the Financial District. Along the harbor in Battery Park, Castle Clinton and the James Watson House display remnants of New York’s intricate history in coastal and harbor defense. Many of the piers located along the harbor also provide access to different locations in the city via the Staten Island Ferry, the seasonal Governors’ Island ferry, and the NYC ferry system.

Next, read about some abandoned stations in the NYC Subway system!