The December 2011 opening of the Grand Central Terminal Apple store was another in a long line of developments that bolstered the station’s status after years of sooty neglect not only as a thriving, glimmering transportation hub, but also as a destination for people with no plans to board a train.
“It’s a fantastic place to manage, and it’s a great place for any kind of commercial activity,” said former Metropolitan Transportation Authority chairman and New York mayoral hopeful Joe Lhota. “Apple moved in and was another transformation that led to more and more people coming through.”
Apple arrived 35 years after the campaign to save Grand Central accelerated under the stewardship of Jacqueline Onassis. When the grand old Pennsylvania Station was demolished in 1963 to make way for today’s Penn Station, it jolted Ms. Onassis and others in New York’s incipient landmark preservation movement.
iPad kiosks and a genius bar attest to Grand Central’s general comeback and emergence as a retail destination. But its central function as a railroad station hasn’t budged over the course of 100 years that have seen the advent of commercial air travel and spiffy, modernized transit centers around the world. Read More