New York Transit Museum
Boerum Place & Schermerhorn Street
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11201
One of New York City’s greatest attractions is a museum dedicated to none other than the city’s very own transit system which has become a cultural icon in media, television and film. The New York Transit Museum, also known unofficially as the MTA Museum, the establishment covers a wide range of urban public transportation history within the Metropolitan region of New York. Inside, visitors are presented with many tours, workshops, exhibitions and educational programs which all cover the social and cultural impacts of public transportation as well as the technology itself.
The galleries within the New York Transit Museum offer many interesting exhibits, a notable one is Steel, Stone, and Backbone which depicts the construction of New York City’s century-old subway system. Some of the exhibits found in the New York Transit Museum are also very interactive, take On The Streets for instance. This exhibit gives visitors a very detailed analyzation of New York City’s buses and trolleys. This exhibit features a full simulated traffic intersection with walking signs, fire hydrants, traffic lights, and the whole works.
The Fare Collection exhibit covers the many different types of fare collection machines that were used throughout the entire history of the subway transportation system. The exhibit allows for full interaction from visitors, allowing them to get a feel for what they were like to use. Everything from various turn-style designs, coins, tokens, and even the first paper ticket cutters are made available here. Another exhibit of great interest is Moving the Millions: New York City’s Subways from its Origins to the Present. Making full use of various cartoons, historical pictures, diagrams, period maps, and even old newspaper clippings, the exhibit manages to depict the many issues and memorable events that helped to carry the development of New York’s transportation system. Be prepared to to board the many vintage subway cars as well as a signal tower.
Beyond the exhibits themselves, the Archives of the New York Transit Museum houses a wide range of maps, documents, drawings, and photographs that cover New York City’s transportation history, all of which are open for researchers alike to come and familiarize themselves with; an Archives visit can be done by appointment only. Overall, the New York Transit Museum is an education milestone not only in the city’s transportation development, but also of cultural, historical, and technological significance as well. May the New York Transit Museum be one of your next stops during your stay in New York City.