May 10, 2010
The classifieds in this issue include three chief executive officer positions!
Partnership with Fashion Institute Leads to New Transit Museum Annex at Grand Central
The New York Transit Museum opened its newly renovated Gallery Annex and Store at Grand Central Terminal with an exhibit showcasing archeological finds at the site of the reconstructed South Ferry Terminal in lower Manhattan—but the new facility is itself noteworthy for the partnership with graduate students at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) that led to its updated design.
Ten students in the institute’s graduate program in exhibition design took on the challenge of renovating the space, including developing proposals that were displayed at the museum’s Grand Central Gallery. A committee comprising FIT and museum staff ultimately selected the design of Cuong Nguyen, which was then adapted by MTA Metro-North Railroad architects. Construction began in January following the closing of the museum’s popular Holiday Train Show.
The museum’s first store at Grand Central opened in 1993 in a site originally occupied by an automatic teller machine and designed pro bono by the graphic design firm Doyle Partners. MTA New York City Transit trade workers used surplus transit station rehab materials to construct the space. Following the renovation of Grand Central Terminal in 1999, the store reopened in a new location, adding a 1,000-square-foot gallery to showcase changing exhibitions produced by the transit museum.
Total merchandise revenue for the museum’s stores at the Brooklyn flagship, Grand Central, and online is close to $2 million per year, or nearly half the museum’s annual budget.