96th Street station (IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line)

96th Street is an express station on the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line of the New York City Subway. Located at the intersection of 96th Street and Broadway on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, it is served by the 1, 2, and 3 trains at all times.

 96 Street
 "1" train"2" train"3" train
MTA NYC logo.svg New York City Subway station (rapid transit)
96th Street IRT Broadway 1.JPG
Uptown island platform
Station statistics
AddressWest 96th Street & Broadway
New York, NY 10025
LocaleUpper West Side
Coordinates40°47′39″N 73°58′19″W / 40.7941°N 73.972°W / 40.7941; -73.972Coordinates: 40°47′39″N 73°58′19″W / 40.7941°N 73.972°W / 40.7941; -73.972
DivisionA (IRT)
Line   IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line
Services   1 all times (all times)
   2 all times (all times)
   3 all times (all times)
Transit connectionsBus transport NYCT Bus: M96, M104, M106
Platforms2 island platforms (in service)
cross-platform interchange
2 side platforms (abandoned)
Other information
OpenedOctober 27, 1904; 116 years ago (1904-10-27)[1]
Station code310[2]
AccessibleThis station is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ADA-accessible
Wireless serviceWi-Fi and cellular service is provided at this station[3]
Opposite-direction transfer availableYes
201911,628,887[5]Decrease 0.6%
Rank25 out of 424[5]
Station succession
Next north157th Street (Broadway–7th express): no regular service
Central Park North–110th Street (Lenox): 2 all times3 all times
103rd Street (Broadway–7th local): 1 all times
Next adjacent station compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 north231st Street (via Broadway–7th): 1 all times
135th Street (via Lenox): 2 all times3 all times
Next south91st Street (local; closed): no service
86th Street (local): 1 all times2 late nights
72nd Street (express): 2 all except late nights3 all times
Next adjacent station compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 south72nd Street: 1 all times2 all times3 all times



Operation of the first subway began on October 27, 1904, with the opening of the original 28 stations of the New York City Subway from City Hall to 145th Street on the West Side Branch including the 96th Street station.[6]:162–191[7] At the time, the station served as the terminus of local trains; express trains would run as locals north to 145th Street.[8]


In 1923, the Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) prepared plans to construct a new mezzanine and entrance at the southern end of the station leading to the central mall of Broadway at 94th Street. Though the IRT sent a proposed agreement for the construction of the entrance to the New York City Board of Estimate, the Board of Estimate suggested that staircases be constructed on the sidewalk. The IRT decided not to pursue this option since it would cost twice as much, or $100,000, and decided not to construct a new entrance at the southern end of the station at the time.[9]

In the 1950s, the platforms were lengthened to accommodate 10-car trains.

By 1981, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority had listed the station among the 69 most deteriorated stations in the subway system.[10] In July 2006, Manhattan Community Board 7 approved an $80 million renovation of the station. Construction started in 2007 on a state-of-the-art headhouse in the median of Broadway between 95th and 96th Streets, with wheelchair-accessible elevators to the platforms; Broadway was reconfigured for four blocks to accommodate this. By 2008, renovation of the 40,000 square feet (3,716 m2) station was nearly finished below budget (only $65 million was used to complete the renovation) and on schedule.[11] By 2009, the opening of the new headhouse was set to be 20 months early and $26 million cheaper due to budget cuts.[12][13] The new headhouse opened on April 5, 2010 and replaced the underpass and side platforms.[14] The side platforms became office and control space, and the entrances removed to accommodate narrowed sidewalks resulting from the roadway being displaced by the new headhouse and its island.[15]

All of the beige tiles installed in the 1950s were removed and either revealed original tiles or were replaced with new tiles. The elevators opened on November 9, 2010 making the station ADA-accessible.[16]

Local residents voiced dissatisfaction with the significant loss of sidewalks adjacent to businesses.[17] Also, the intersection of 96th Street and Broadway is dangerous, making the crossing to the new station entrance "treacherous".[18]

Station layoutEdit

Track layout
Upper level
Lower level
G Street level Fare control
  Elevators inside station house in median of Broadway; entrances on south side of 96th Street and north side of 95th Street
M Mezzanine Crossover between platforms
Platform level
Side platform, not in service
Northbound local   toward 242nd Street (103rd Street)
(No service: 157th Street)
  toward 241st Street late nights (Central Park North–110th Street)
Island platform  
Northbound express   toward 241st Street (Central Park North–110th Street)
  toward 148th Street (Central Park North–110th Street)
Southbound express   toward Flatbush Avenue (72nd Street)
  toward New Lots Avenue (Times Square nights) (72nd Street)
Island platform  
Southbound local   toward South Ferry (86th Street)
  toward Flatbush Avenue late nights (86th Street)
(No service: 91st Street)
Side platform, not in service

Currently, 96th Street operates in the same manner as other normal express stations in the subway system. There are two island platforms that allow for cross-platform interchanges between local (outer tracks) and express (inner tracks) trains heading in the same direction, in this case uptown or downtown. During normal service, southbound local trains use track B1 and southbound express trains use track B2. Northbound express trains use track B3 and northbound local trains use track B4. These track designations are not posted in the station, but are used in the chaining of each individual track, used to measure distance by train crews on the subway.[19][20]

North of 96th Street, the express tracks descend and turn east under West 104th Street and running northeast under Central Park on their way to the IRT Lenox Avenue Line at West 110th Street. The local tracks remain on the upper level to Riverdale, Bronx. After the express tracks diverge, a currently unused center track starts at approximately 100th Street. Some last minute design changes added the third track northbound, and a provision for a third track was also built into the lower level Lenox branch of the junction. This accounts for the extra space seen alongside the active tracks in this area.[citation needed]

The station was extended and widened in 1950 to accommodate longer trains. The extent of the original station is clearly visible, as the renovation was not done in the same style. Differences in the walls and ceiling are visible at the south end. The creation of a new entrance at 94th Street led to the closure of the 91st Street station, as it would have been pointless to lengthen it for 10-car local trains with an adjacent station only a few blocks away.[21][22]

Unused side platformsEdit

Original cartouche on the wall with the number "96"
Modern wall mosaics

Access to the station was originally from stairways along the sidewalks of Broadway, to the extreme north end of the side platforms, then to the center island platforms via an underpass.[23] As of April 5, 2010, a new headhouse in Broadway's center median between 96th and 95th Streets rendered those entrances obsolete. New staircases and elevators descend to the platforms from the central station building. A former public restroom now being used as a community center in the median of Broadway north of 96th Street is sometimes mistaken for a former subway station headhouse; however, this structure was built decades after the subway station and conforms to the design of other public restroom buildings in New York City[24] rather than to the design of IRT subway headhouses such as 72nd Street.

The station's configuration, with both island and side platforms, is unusual in the New York City Subway. As originally intended, the island platforms facilitated an easy transfer between local and express trains, while the shorter side platforms provided easy access from local trains to the street. This design was also utilized at Brooklyn Bridge–City Hall and 14th Street–Union Square on the IRT Lexington Avenue Line. When the subway first opened, it was possible to open both sides of the train at once. As this is not practical on more modern trains, only the doors facing the island platforms are used (to permit transfers between local and express trains), and the side platforms were abandoned.

The unused side platforms and former entrance/exits have been turned into storage space and offices. Switching system panels can be seen through new windows on the now walled off western side platform.


Completed new headhouse

As 96th Street is a major transfer point, there are two sets of entrances and exits at the station.[25] For the purposes of this article, entrance and exit are interchangeable. It is important to note that unlike more recent stations with full-length mezzanines, these entrance points are not connected; they can only be reached from the ends of the platforms. These distinctions are noted on the platforms.

  •   95th–96th Street headhouse: In 2007, construction started on a domed, glass headhouse on the Broadway median between 95th and 96th Streets. The headhouse opened on April 5, 2010. Entrances are on both the 95th and 96th Street sides of the headhouse. Above each of the headhouse's entrances, and unusually for New York City Subway stations, the entrance's name plaque reads simply "96" in white letters upon glass, and light-up red circles containing the numbers "1", "2", and "3", the services of the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line as of 2010. On the 96th Street side, there is a fare booth.
  • Original 96th Street exits (closed): There were two staircases each at the southeastern and southwestern corners of 96th Street and Broadway.[26][a] Although fare control was at platform-level (on the unused side platforms), there was a free cross-under at this end of the station upon entering the paid area. This setup occurred due to an important sewer pipe that prevented engineers from building a mezzanine level similar to other express stations. The staircases were closed when the headhouse was opened on April 5, 2010, but a part of the original cross-under inside the fare control still exists.[23][a]
  • 93rd–94th Street exits: There are two staircases each at the southeastern and southwestern corners of 94th Street and Broadway.[26] There is a crossover within fare control at this end of the station.

In popular cultureEdit

96th Street Station is the location of a chase scene in the 1979 cult film The Warriors. However, the scenes were actually filmed at the unused outer tracks of the Hoyt–Schermerhorn Streets station on the IND Fulton Street Line in Brooklyn. The exterior shots were filmed at the 72nd Street station.[27]



  1. ^ "Our Subway Open: 150,000 Try It; Mayor McClellan Runs the First Official Train". The New York Times. October 28, 1904. p. 1. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  2. ^ "Station Developers' Information". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved June 13, 2017.
  3. ^ "NYC Subway Wireless – Active Stations". Transit Wireless Wifi. Retrieved November 13, 2019.
  4. ^ "Facts and Figures: Annual Subway Ridership 2014–2019". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 2020. Retrieved May 26, 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Facts and Figures: Annual Subway Ridership 2014–2019". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 2020. Retrieved May 26, 2020.
  6. ^ Walker, James Blaine (1918). Fifty Years of Rapid Transit — 1864 to 1917. New York, N.Y.: Law Printing. Retrieved November 6, 2016.
  7. ^ "Subway Opening To-day With Simple Ceremony – Exercises at One O'Clock – Public to be Admitted at Seven – John Hay May Be Present – Expected to Represent the Federal Government – President Roosevelt Sends Letter of Regret" (PDF). The New York Times. October 27, 1904. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 28, 2017.
  8. ^ Some subway ifs and don'ts The New York Times (on NYCSubway) Retrieved September 1, 2008
  9. ^ Third Annual Report For the Calendar Year 1923. New York State Transit Commission. 1924. p. 93.
  10. ^ Gargan, Edward A. (June 11, 1981). "Agency Lists its 69 Most Deteriorated Subway Stations". The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2016.
  11. ^ Joey Arak (September 16, 2008). "Subway Station of the Future Opens on Upper West Side". Curbed. Retrieved August 23, 2013.
  12. ^ Joey Arak (April 29, 2009). "Cash-Strapped MTA Tinkering With New 96th Street Station". Curbed. Retrieved August 23, 2013.
  13. ^ Haddon, Heather (April 28, 2009). "MTA shaves cost, features from 96th Street station rehab". amNew York. Archived from the original on May 3, 2009.
  14. ^ Joey Arak (April 5, 2010). "Subway Station of the Future Opens on Upper West Side". Curbed. Retrieved August 23, 2013.
  15. ^ MTA presentation to Manhattan community board 7
  16. ^ Leslie Albrecht (November 8, 2010). "Months After Grand Opening, MTA Says Elevators at 96th Street Station To Open Tuesday". DNAinfo. Archived from the original on November 9, 2010. Retrieved November 10, 2010.
  17. ^ 96th Street sidewalk models make us believe Curbed Retrieved September 1, 2007 Archived September 28, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ Pete Donohue (April 5, 2014). "Treacherous intersection of W. 96th St. and Broadway getting a safety-promoting overhaul: DOT officials". New York Daily News. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
  19. ^ Dougherty, Peter (2006) [2002]. Tracks of the New York City Subway 2006 (3rd ed.). Dougherty. OCLC 49777633 – via Google Books.
  20. ^ New York City Subway chaining Archived April 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine TheJoeKorner Retrieved September 1, 2008
  21. ^ Aciman, Andre (January 8, 1999). "My Manhattan; Next Stop: Subway's Past". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved August 26, 2016.
  22. ^ "High-Speed Broadway Local Service Began in 1959". The Bulletin. New York Division, Electric Railroaders' Association. 52 (2). February 2009. Retrieved August 26, 2016 – via Issu.
  23. ^ a b 96th Street NYCSubway Retrieved September 1, 2008
  24. ^ Forgotten NY New York's Beaux-Arts Bathrooms
  25. ^ "MTA Neighborhood Maps: Upper West Side and Central park" (PDF). mta.info. Metropolitan Transportation Authority. 2015. Retrieved September 30, 2015.
  26. ^ a b 96th Street station OnNYTurf Retrieved September 1, 2008 Archived August 13, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  27. ^ http://www.scoutingny.com/the-new-york-city-filming-locations-of-the-warriors-part-3/

External linksEdit

External video
  96 St Station House, Metropolitan Transportation Authority; April 16, 2010; 2:14 YouTube clip