The Grand Central Terminal in New York City is a famous railway station as well as tourist attraction, opened in 1870. In terms of the number of platforms, it is ranked as the largest rail facility in the world which also covers huge area – approximately 48 acres. The station features two levels that are both situated below the ground. The upper level has 41 tracks while the lower one has 26.
To date, the Grand Central Terminal serves as the main link between the Metro North railroad and counties such as Dutchess, Westchester and Putnam. Apart from its core role of securing transport however, the terminal is one of the major attractions in New York. Named the loveliest station in the world, statistics have proved that the terminal is the sixth most visited attraction in the entire world. More than 21 million visitors head to the terminal to explore its unique features every year.
The center of the station is arguably its ultimate point of attraction. It is a wide space that is always filled with crowds who turn up to take a glimpse of this historic landmark. Visitors can take a siesta in the information booth which is located in the center of the terminal. At the top of the information center is a unique clock that is made of pure milk glass. This clock is one of the most recognized parts of the station.
The outside of the terminal is equally fascinating. There is also a clock that has amazing Tiffany glass. This unique clock is surrounded by different sculptures of Hercules, Minerva and Mercury that were made by the John Donnelly Company. The design of the sculptures was done by Jules-Felix Coutan, who was a renowned French artist. The sculptures were unveiled in 1914. At that time this trio was considered to be the largest sculptural group in the world. It was 48 feet (14.6 m) high, the clock in the center having a circumference of 13 feet (4 m).
Among other attractions are numerous restaurants around the station that provide the best food in the area. Apart from the numerous food outlets, there are also newsstands, fresh food market, bakeries and a gourmet. There are amazing small franchises, numerous retail stores and other private outlets. This simply means that you can eat any food you desire, shop for your favorite products and capture the amazing scenery that has always been breathtaking.
Indeed, it can be argued that the Grand Central Terminal is a major boost to the New York economy. As a major transport hub in the USA, the railway terminal has been in existence for more than 100 years now. Its firmness and strength is guaranteed because of the strong steel materials that were used for construction. It is believed that the terminal took 10 years of construction to be completed. The architecture of this spectacular building is the pillar of its strength. The strong engineering that formed its construction is the reason why it has been able to stand strong for a long time.