Old City Hall Station was the very first station on the once on the original New York Subway System. It was built under City Hall. Due to age and other factors, including the proximity to the newer Brooklyn Bridge station, it was put out of commission in 1945. It is now open to the public to see, but only on guided tours provided by the New York Transit Museum. The tours take about two hours, and start at the new Brooklyn Bridge station, which is approximately 600 feet away.
That paragraph is from the New York Transit Museum website. The first sentence refers only to the tour of the Old City Hall Station, and the other also includes things happening in and around the museum itself. (It's a little bit confusing, though, so it could be a good idea to give them a call in case you can book a tour now.)
In order to take the tour of Old City Hall Station, you must be a member of the New York Transit Museum. Note that the tour costs $50 in addition to the membership fee.
There are some strict rules you must follow, including:
To be admitted to these restricted sites, participants must provide a copy of a government-issued ID for a background check, and must sign a release immediately after purchasing tickets. If you do not submit your signed release form and copy of a government-issued photo ID by the stated deadline you will not be permitted on the tour and you will not receive a refund.
The tours are sold out as soon as the tickets go on sale, usually within the first hour!
You usually need to wait until a designated time in order to get your tickets, which are released in blocks. Members receive an email newsletter three times a year, announcing the release of tickets for the coming few months. May through August tours become available in April. This means you may still be able to book a July tour if you check the website as soon as they go on sale! Tickets are sometimes made available during other times, but it's hard to know when those will be.
Watch our email newsletter for new tour dates. We schedule a block of tours and release tickets three times a year, usually in April (for tours taking place May – August), August (for tours taking place September – December), and December (for tours taking place January – April). 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 in to buy tickets when they go on sale. Tours tend to sell out very fast that morning, often within the first hour! Tickets cost $50 per person. Here are answers to some other frequently asked questions about buying members’ tickets..
This site has a description and pictures taken by someone during the tour
Museum membership allows you and your family to do other fun things in and connected with the museum. For instance, there are Trivia Nights; Discovery rooms for play and education; Train Operator's workshops; access to other historic sites, just to name a few. Some are free with membership. For others, there's a fee, often around $15 or $20 dollars. They can enhance your trip, and help you get the most value from your membership fee. A program list is here. Search by date and see what's going on during that July week. I found a program that takes place on July 27, and I'm sure there are others.
If you get a chance to go, come back and let us know if it was fun!