If you frequent the 96th Street station on Broadway, perhaps you’ve already taken for granted the new headhouse that, in my opinion, ought to win some kind of award. I just marvel every time I pass or use the structure, which improves every day on the way to completion.
The latest addition is inside and overhead, an art installation that is part of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Arts for Transit program. The program is aimed at “encouraging the use of public transit by presenting visual and performing arts projects in subway and commuter rail stations.”
As much as I applaud public art, however, I can think of a dozen other initiatives that might better encourage such use. But that’s another story.
Indeed, the more art in the world, the better. I wouldn’t call the art particularly distinctive or even noticeable, but the stainless-steel flowers are a nice touch. How long they’ll remain clean and shiny is perhaps a question best left uncontemplated.
The piece consists of 180 metal flowers that “link together to form a hanging garden,” according to the MTA’s arts program. Called Bloemendaal, the name references Bloomingdale, the Upper West Side’s historical name.
Part of the station’s $65 million overhaul since 2007, the project will be finished on time and on budget in September, officials say. By then, the station’s first two elevators will be installed since it opened in 1904 to provide access to what are now the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 lines on the Upper West Side.
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