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“Wish We Could Have Stayed....”

New York Transit Museum
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$109.00*
and up
New York Pass
Ranked #13 of 227 things to do in Brooklyn
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: The New York Transit Museum, one of the city's leading cultural institutions, is the largest museum in the United States devoted to urban public transportation history, and one of the premier institutions of its kind in the world. The Museum explores the development of the greater New York Metropolitan region through the presentations of exhibitions, tours, educational programs, and workshops dealing with the cultural, social, and technological history of public transportation. Since its inception over a quarter century ago, the Museum, housed in a historic 1936 IND subway station in Brooklyn Heights, has grown in scope and popularity. As custodian and interpreter of the region's extensive public transportation networks, the Museum strives to share, through its public programs, this rich and vibrant history with local, regional, and international audiences.
Reviewed March 13, 2014

On a recent visit to NY, I, my husband, son and his girlfriend visited the NY Transit Museum. For a mere $7 pp, ($5 for seniors) it began as a very interesting and informative trip back in history but quickly deteriorated due to, as one reviewer mentioned, "kids running around". Our guide, Katherine, was professional, knowledgeable and extremely tolerant of the three thoroughly unruly children in our group. She answered their questions patiently while they interrupted, jumped in front of her, touched and grabbed her in inappropriate areas of her body. I'm sorry, no employee in any way, shape or form should have to put up with misbehaving children while their mother simply looks the other way. These children were completely out of control and even caused some visitors to leave and others to become part of a shouting match with their mother who defended their actions as simple curiosity. Then she started accusing the whole group of attacking her children and causing one of the children to begin crying. Can you imagine what one couple from London thought of the people of New York based on this visit?
Although Katherine tried her best to keep things together, we ended up leaving long before the tour had ended. It's a shame that this incident was allowed to accelerate even though Katherine called for security when it looked like the mother was ready to start a fist fight with another visitor. Someone should have come to Katherine's rescue IMMEDIATELY to diffuse the situation by asking the verbally abusive woman to leave with her uncontrollable children.
That being said - PLEASE do not let this deter you from a visit to the museum. It is filled with old subway cars which had been preserved, as well as models and other exhibits which are displayed. Plans were to close the exhibition after the United States Bicentennial celebration, but it proved to be so popular that it remained open and eventually became a permanent museum. Visitors are able to enter and sit in the vintage subway cars while tour guides explain the history of New York City and the role of the transportation in the city. Artifacts from historic subway and bus operations, as well as NYC transportation infrastructure, are on display. The exhibits on the upper level frequently change and numerous other artifacts that highlight topics such as subway signaling and control, electrical power, railway infrastructure, station maps and signage, and station artwork.
We wish we had be able to stay for the entire tour. Message to museum security, when one of your employees calls - do something and do it fast! Handle it immediately! It should never have gotten to the point when one person ruins a visit for an entire group. Security shouldn't be fearful of asking these people to leave.
I highly doubt this situation occurs with any regularity, so DO go visit the Transit Museum. It is an interesting and informative look at what made New York City, the Captiol of the World.

1  Thank patsjag28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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461 - 465 of 762 reviews

Reviewed March 9, 2014

I've been coming here since I was a kid and always enjoy my visits. It's pretty cheap ($7) and as long as you don't mind the fact that there will be a ton of children running around, it's worth a visit. Not only do you get to enjoy the old trains, but they're full of period advertisements which can be as enjoyable as the trains themselves. The exhibits about subway history aren't bad either nor is the gift shop. It's an easy walk to a lot of subway stops too (as well it should be!).

Thank Sal_Paradise767
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2014

The New York Transit Museum is housed in an old subway station not far from the Brooklyn Borough Hall and is well worth a visit. The upper level of the station houses an exhibit on the construction of the subway, how the subway system is powered, the history of surface transport in NYC (buses, trolleybuses, trams etc.), a collection of streetcar models and the different turnstiles used through history which are all fascinating. Downstairs on the platform level there are close to 20 restored subway cars from 1907 to the 1990s which you are free to explore. This is the highlight by far and is a real walk back through time. The period advertising in the old cars was very interesting, along with the old subway system maps. As a transport enthusiast I loved my visit here and only left because the museum was closing, but there is something in this museum that everyone will find interesting. The gift shop is also pretty fun.

Thank geographyguy_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 2, 2014

The museum is in an unused subway station so you enter by going down the stairs. Great pictures of the construction of the subway along with good descriptions. Also, they have various displays and subway cars from the beginning to the present.

Thank Richard W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 16, 2014

This museum is great to take small kids. They offer a lot of hands on exhibits for the young ones. The lower level houses MANY vintage subway trains that you can walk onto. The cars sit on real tracks that occupy a closed but still functioning subway station. My 3 1/2 year old son Loves trains, and he wasn't disappointed with the visit.

Thank Jason S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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