When I watched the video below for the first time yesterday, I got chills. It’s one of the most awesome transit videos I have ever seen. The person who shot the video put together a bunch of clips from the various Times Square subway stations. The video is from 1986! It is absolutely amazing to see how far the NYC MTA subway system has come in the last 25 years. In 1986 there was no air conditioning on most of the trains and the cars were full of vandalism in the form of graffiti. Some of my favorite types of NYC subway trains are included in this video in an almost new state! You can also see what it was like to use tokens — way before the Metrocard made its first appearance.
I know it’s cheesy but where are all of those people in the video today? What have they been doing since 1986? The man in the white shirt carrying a couple of suitcases? What about the man in the tie carrying the briefcase? The woman in the white sport coat leaning against a pole carrying her pocketbook?
So take 10 minutes and watch this video and see what it was like to ride the subway in the mid-80s!
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