Magazine article Financial History

Bringing the Subway to Columbus Circle

Magazine article Financial History

Bringing the Subway to Columbus Circle

Article excerpt

As a New York City institution, the Museum's collection contains a number of historical images documenting the city's development. This photograph shows Columbus Circle during subway construction in 1901. The Museum acquired the print in 1994, and the original photograph is in the collection of the Library of Congress.

Named for the landmarked monument of Christopher Columbus at its center, Columbus Circle is a busy traffic circle located at the intersection of Eighth Avenue, Broadway, Central Park South and Central Park West at the southwest corner of Central Park. The circle was constructed from 1868-1870 as a part of the original plan for Central Park and was known simply as "the circle" or the "grand circle" prior to the installation of the monument in 1892. The monument, sculpted by Italian artist Gaetano Russo, was installed to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Columbus' landing in the Americas and was constructed with funds raised by the Italian language newspaper, II Progresso.

Columbus Circle was excavated in 1901 to accommodate construction of New York City's first subway line by the Rapid Transit Construction Company. As shown in the photograph, the column was reinforced with trestles, and the streetcar tracks running through the circle were suspended on wooden bridges. Rock beneath the column and circle was blasted away to make room for what is now part of the 59th Street-Columbus Circle station. The changes made during the construction made an already busy and confusing intersection even more chaotic for traffic and pedestrians. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.