Tag Archives: New York Transit Museum

The New York Transit Museum

Welcome to my New York City Blog!  Here I share updates on places I’ve visited recently in New York, visitors I’ve had or tours I’ve given.  The subject of this first post is…the New York Transit Museum. 

Last week, I had the pleasure of visiting the New York Transit Museum for the first time.  Well the first time since I was old enough to care about anything more than sitting in the driver’s seat of the buses.  Located in the old Court Street station of the little-used Independent subway system, this lesser-known Brooklyn museum is fascinating for kids and adults alike.  However, it doesn’t have the mass appeal of the Met or even the Museum of the City of New York.  This museum is best for anyone with an interest in New York’s public transit system or kids who find buses and trains fascinating—so basically all kids.  Having been a Geology major in college, one of the exhibits I enjoyed the most was about the bedrock of Manhattan and the various struggles encountered while tunneling through it.

Here are some interesting facts I learned:

  • The subway cost a nickel from its opening in 1904 until 44 years later when that fare doubled to a dime.  This is somewhat amazing considering that the fares have increased an average of every 4 ½ years since then.
  • The only place in Manhattan (other than the northernmost tip) where the subway goes above ground is on the IRT #1 train at 125th St.  This is because of the Manhattan Valley, a topographical exception to the generally flat island of Manhattan.  The subway goes above ground for 13 blocks to avoid a steep decline followed by a rapid incline.
  • The MTA sends more bills (number, not monetary value) to the Federal Reserve than any other organization  in the country.

Don’t miss their collection of old trains on display and the old ads and subway maps inside them.  And just because I’m older, doesn’t mean I can’t still drive the buses!


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