Most New Yorker’s tend to avoid Times Square; most visitors put it first on their list. But most agree that Times Square is one of the most dynamic, frenetic and rapidly changing areas of the city – quintessential New York attributes.
The “Bowtie” of Times Square – where Seventh Avenue and Broadway intersect – is literally just around the corner from The Time. When Mayor Michael Bloomberg turned Broadway into pedestrian walkways a few years ago, the area has become a much more inviting place to linger. Be sure to make time to have a leisurely stroll around. While you’re exploring keep an eye out for these less-known locales.
Spanning the entire block between 45th Street and 46th Street (and wrapping around both corners!), the 24-million pixel display is longer than a football field and advertisements cost roughly $100K per day. Try to visit at 11:57 PM when it and most the other displays in Times Square are co-opted for “Midnight Moment” – a nightly rotating installation of video art.
This small building on 43rd Street is the original home of The New York Times (how Times Square got its name). The digital-billboard-plastered building is largely empty, yet valued around $500 million because of its profits in advertising. And the roof, of course, is where the famous ball drop happens each New Year’s Eve.
Max Neuhaus’s “Times Square” was installed in 1977 and is managed by the DIA Art Foundation. The installation consists of various hums coming from beneath the grates of the pedestrian island between 45th and 46th streets. There are no signs or explanations, intentionally.
Just south of TKTS and the famous Red Steps you will find two notable figures. Nearest the stairs is Francis P. Duffy, a decorated World War I lieutenant and chaplain, then later a priest at a Time Square church. Closer to 46th Street you’ll see the composer, actor, playwright and producer, George Cohan gazing north. Cohan was a Broadway fixture from an early age, and many regard him as the father of American musical comedy.
Venture into the 42nd Street Times Square subway station and search out the amazing Roy Lichtenstein piece, “Times Square Mural.” Most Lichtenstein pieces are in world class museums and galleries. This one can be seen on your way to the train! Bonus: Just north of Times Square you can see another massive Roy Lichtenstein, “Mural with Blue Brushstroke,” in the lobby of 787 Seventh Avenue – also free to view.
Be sure to make you reservations at The Time New York Hotel, which is just footsteps away from Times Square and all NYC has to offer. For more behind the scenes activities and recommendations, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Jay Pingree