One of the crown jewels of Manhattan, the grand dame of New York City, is turning 100. We are talking, of course, about Grand Central Terminal. A century ago, on February 2, 1913 – after a decade of construction – the building that would revolutionize commuter train travel opened its doors.

There isn’t anything to say that hasn’t been said before about the building’s grandiose and tumultuous history. So, we offer something else to commemorate one of the most amazing buildings in the city: a 360 look at Grand Central. Part of a larger project photographing iconic landmarks in glorious 360 degrees, we teamed up with Shots 360 and photographer Thomas Erh, the man behind the lens of interactive 360º panoramic photography, to document some of our favorite Old New York places.


Enjoy!

10.21.2011

TWA terminal at JFK | OHNY

Yesterday I trekked out to JFK to tour the old TWA terminal.  I figured it would be a fun and low key thing to do on a Sunday afternoon. After all, how many people could possibly want to schlep all the way to the airpot without the benefit of going on a trip or picking up a loved one? Besides, this was a late addition to this year's Open House New York. Probably no one noticed, right?



I thought surely I would have the building more or less to myself. And the promised Q&A with the architects leading the restoration? I would have all the time in the world to ask questions. 


Well, not quite... It was a paparazzi-like mob scene, the with the building as the main attraction. The turn out was huge and the hosts were extremely gracious and patient, answering all of our many questions. 






For example, we found out that it took 2 years to procure exact replicas of the itty bitty round tiles are are seen throughout the building - each about the size of an Altoid. 


Or that the iconic roof is made of 4 pieces of concrete, each the result of a 30-hour continuos pour. Originally intended to be an exposed concrete ceiling, it was eventually covered in asbestos to hide unsightly cracks. (During this restoration, the asbestos was removed). 


Designed by architect Eero Saarien the terminal opened in 1962 (by which time it was already functionally obsolete, as airplanes got larger and larger, space at the terminals needed to grow to accommodate the additional travelers, the ticket agents, etc). The building's interior and exterior were landmarked by the city in 1994 and were placed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.


Still sorting through the bazillion photos I took. I'll upload some more in future posts.