On July 4, 1976, the New York City Transit Exhibit opened in a disused subway station in downtown Brooklyn. Organized by New York City Transit employees to commemorate the US Bicentennial, the exhibit highlighted the city’s subway system as one of the nation’s great achievements in engineering. Though it was planned to be on view for just six weeks, the exhibit proved so popular it was never dismantled – and has grown into the country’s only museum devoted to urban mass transit.
Today, the New York Transit Museum’s mission is to collect, exhibit, interpret, and preserve the history, sociology, and technology of public transportation in the New York metropolitan region, and to conduct research and educational programs that will make its extensive collection accessible and meaningful to a broad audience. As keeper and champion of New York City’s transportation history, the Museum holds a growing collection of 10,000 artifacts and hundreds of thousands of archival items representing over 100 years of urban railroad, subway, and bus travel.
The Transit Museum has two locations-- a unique, authentically restored subway station in downtown Brooklyn– built in 1936 as part of the second phase of IND construction – is its main site. The Gallery Annex and Store at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan opened in 1998 and presents two exhibits per year, plus the annual, highly popular Holiday Train Show. The Transit Museum presents exhibitions and programs that explore the infrastructure that makes New York City run and examines issues relating to sustainability and urban development. The Museum’s education programs for school groups serve tens of thousands of children, teachers and special needs visitors with guided tours and workshops that teach social studies, science, technology, engineering, arts, and math. More than half a million people enjoy the Museum’s programs and exhibits each year.
The Transit Museum Store was established to support the exhibition and educational programming of the New York Transit Museum. With stores in the Museum’s main subway station home in Downtown Brooklyn, at the Museum’s Gallery Annex and Store at Grand Central Terminal, and online, the stores generate about 20% of the Museum’s operating revenue.
Products sold in our stores use well-known and historic iconography of New York’s subways, buses, commuter railroads, bridges and tunnels to create stylish, must-have apparel, accessories and collectibles that conjure urban street life and the energy of the greatest city in the world.
Show your street cred while supporting one of New York’s most intriguing museums! Find out about our programs for children and adults here. Become a member and get 10% off all your purchases!