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dolowicz

IRT Arcade (or "The Hole") in Times Square Subway: The Lost Passageway from the 1960s

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Posted (edited)

Does anyone remember the "arcade" that was located next to the IRT area of Times Square with an direct entrance on W 42 Street between Broadway and 7th Avenue? It was closed in 1967 due to high crime rate and nicknamed "the hole". It was a seedy place and according to police home to "unwanted people" lurking around on a daily and nightly basis. 

Up until it closed it also served as a passageway to the IRT subway from the street with a staircase going down from the outside of the building. It contained 10 shops, a concession stand and a rather large arcade. Not many images exist of this place and I can't figure out exactly where it was located as the simple diagram attached to a New York Times article doesn't match up with anything on the street level. The only thing that looks relatively close is the basement area of the old "New York Times Building", but it's not really large enough to contain 10 shops. Another candidate is the new "Times Square Tower" which old diagram show that it had a private property underneath it up until the renovations around 2005-2010 and now is part of the station complex. But that area also doesn't seem big enough. 

The plan was to wall the entrance off and create two new exits directly from the curb side above using two old exits that were slabbed over in 1935. According to my research this was implemented in 1964 but the arcade stayed open for another 3 years.

Here's a link to the Times article from 1964:
https://www.nytimes.com/1964/01/22/archives/dingy-passageway-to-subway-at-42d-street-and-seventh-avenue-is-to.html?searchResultPosition=1

Attaching images for your reference, would be great if we could investigate the exact whereabout of where this place was located in the complex and if anyone actually remember passing by the place.

Times-Square-Arcade-in-1964-3.jpg

Times-Square-Arcade-in-1964-1.jpg

Times-Square-Arcade-in-1964-2.jpg

42nd-st.png

 

Edited by dolowicz
Added another image
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15 hours ago, Kamen Rider said:

According to the map, that would have to have been part of 1 Times Square.

Except the basement in the old "Times Tower" is tiny and almost shaped like a triangle. So I don't believe this was the location.

 

irt-shuttle-original-plan.jpg

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then it wasn't between Broadway and 7th at 42nd because that's all there is between the two. I'm going to go out on a limb and therefor suggest it's the current entrance west of 7th, and that most or all of it was demolished when 3 Times Square was built in the late 90s. 

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