Grand Central Centennial

The Grand Central rail terminal is approaching 100 years.  On Friday 8th February, it will be marking this milestone with a celebration of speeches, a brass band and a cake depicting the infamous multi-million dollar clock.  This date is exactly 100 years to the day of when the station master received the key to Grand Central, midtown Manhattan.     Another way the centennial is being marked is by switching the prices they had that day in 1913: 19 cents for a slice of cheesecake and 10 cents for a shoeshine!

One hundred years following its inception, the terminal is still one of the most visited tourist attractions in the world, with a special interest for lovers of architecture.  It was built in the style of Beaux Arts by the Vanderbilt family, but is modern enough to be of efficient service to New York’s commuters. Indeed, around 750,000 people pass through every day.

Grand Central Station boasts a great deal of history.  In the 1970s it was only due to the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’ hard work that it was saved from being turned into an office tower.   In 1978 the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of maintaining the station on the basis that cities are well within their rights to protect historic buildings.

This really is quite a milestone.  As Michael Bloomberg, the city’s Mayor pointed out, “it’s not easy to last 100 years in a city of constant change,” but Grand Central Station has done it.

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