HOW TO TOUR OLD CITY HALL STATION
In 1904, New York City’s very first subway ride left from the City Hall station amidst great civic pride. Designed by renowned architects Heins & LaFarge, the station featured innovative vaulted tile ceilings by master artisan Rafael Guastavino. Its elegant chandeliers, leaded skylights, and graceful curves inspired awe among visitors.
Though its track is still active as a turnaround for the 6 line, trains no longer stop at Old City Hall station. New York Transit Museum members have the opportunity to explore this New York landmark through exclusive guided tours.
- Old City Hall tours are currently sold out through May 2019. The next round of tickets will go on sale to members on April 17th. Not a member? Join or renew now.
- Tickets cost $50 per person and sell out very quickly.
- Reservations for tours of Old City Hall station are not confirmed until the Museum receives a signed release form and a copy of a government-issued ID for you and any guests. All attendees must submit this required security clearance paperwork within 72 hours of ticket purchase. If we do not receive it by the stated deadline, your reservation will be canceled and you will not receive a refund.
- Old City Hall station tours begin above ground with a historical walk in the area, followed by a visit to the station itself. Tours last approximately 90 minutes from beginning to end, run rain or shine, and require walking, standing, and stair climbing. No restrooms are available on the route.
- Personal photography and video recording are permitted in Old City Hall station. However, tripods and stands may not be used. Commercial photography and video recording are not permitted. Audio or video recording of tour guides for personal use requires pre-authorization through the Museum’s press department. Permission to photograph may be revoked at any time.
- Children must be 10+ to attend an Old City Hall station tour, and must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
- All ticket sales are final. Should you be unable to attend the tour on the date you reserved, the full price of unused tickets may be treated as a donation to the Transit Museum and is tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law. The Museum is not able to reschedule reservations to another tour date.
- Old City Hall station is not available for film shoots, photo shoots, or private events.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to getting on the tour.
1. Be a Transit Museum member. Since there are a limited number of tour spots, we reserve them as a privilege of Transit Museum membership. You can buy as many tickets as there are people covered by your membership. For example, to buy two tour tickets, you’ll need a Dual/Dual Plus membership or higher. See the chart below for a full list of ticket allowances for each level. Please note that Child tickets on Family level membership and higher are only for youths ages 10-17. Children under 10 are not permitted on the Old City Hall station tour. Adults may not be substituted for children’s spots on any tours. Please note: Museum guest passes, special caregiver and child add-ons are valid only for Museum admission, not special tours.
**Existing members at the Dual 1 level are eligible to purchase tickets at the member discount for 1 adult & 1 child per regular tour and 1 adult & 1 child per members-only tour. Existing members at the Contributing and Contributing PLUS levels are eligible to purchase tickets at the member discount for 2 adults & 4 children per regular tour and 2 adults & 2 children per members-only tour.
2. Watch our email newsletter for new tour dates. We schedule a block of tours and release tickets three times a year, usually in January (for tours taking place January – May), April (for tours taking place May – August), and August (for tours taking place September – December). If you’ve just joined and see that tours are sold out, there will be more chances to buy tickets during your year of membership. Sign up for our email newsletter here.
3. Create an account in our online ticketing system. If you bought your membership online, you have already set this up! If you’ve never bought tickets from us online before, create an account here. You do not need your membership card or number to buy tickets. Also, note that our ticketing website is different from our online store and the two accounts are not connected.
4. Sign in to buy tickets when they go on sale. Tours tend to sell out very fast that morning, often within 30 minutes! Tickets cost $50 per person. Here are answers to some other frequently asked questions about buying members’ tickets.
5. Submit the required security clearance paperwork by the deadline for yourself and any guests to confirm your spot(s) on the tour. Anyone who does not submit a signed release form and copy of a government-issued photo ID by the stated deadline will not be permitted on the tour and will not receive a refund.