A Rare Glimpse of the Ancient Infrastructure That Controls NYC's Subway

New York City’s subway system is a wonder of engineering—but sadly, that engineering is so old that it’s not even manufactured anymore, causing huge problems for the people who run it and anyone trying to use it. That means the MTA has built a whole shop up around trying to maintain its aging technology, and now… »7/30/15 1:45pm7/30/15 1:45pm

A New Glimpse Into the Gigantic Construction Project Hidden Below NYC

What do you want to be when you grow up? A baseball player? A doctor? A blogger (LOL)? How about a badass who carves caves through the Earth to improve the lives of millions in America's greatest city? That sounds pretty heroic. And right now, hundreds of hard hat-wearing workers are tackling that grand task »12/18/14 2:53pm12/18/14 2:53pm

What Really Happened to the MTA's 60 Million Leftover Subway Tokens

It's been over a decade since the MTA did away with subway tokens, those dirty metal bits of New York-ness that seemed unremarkable until, suddenly, they were gone. Since then, rumors have swirled about the fate of the 60 million tokens once in circulation—where were they? Now, we have an answer. »12/10/14 4:00pm12/10/14 4:00pm

You Can Finally Buy the Design Manual That Defined the NYC Subway

Earlier this year we wrote about the unlikely story of three graphic designers who discovered a copy of the book that dictates every aspect of the subway system, forgotten in the basement of the design studio Pentagram. Now, the MTA has agreed to reprint the 44-year-old design bible for sale—but only for the next… »9/10/14 10:05am9/10/14 10:05am

These Enormous Caverns Below NYC Are Starting To Look Like Train Tunnels

It's been several months since we last checked in with New York City's perennially delayed, incredibly expensive infrastructural wonder: The East Side Access project, a plan to build a new station beneath Grand Central station that will connect Manhattan and Queens. Deep below the city, work continues—and now, the MTA… »8/12/14 9:37am8/12/14 9:37am

Inside the Secret Building That's Bringing Cell Service To NYC's Subway

As Hurricane Sandy revealed almost two years ago, New York's 100-year-old subway is not a modern and robust system. In fact, compared to other cities, it's downright dirty, unpredictable and technologically behind. But the Metro Transit Authority is currently dragging it into the future—and I got the chance to go… »7/01/14 2:00pm7/01/14 2:00pm

This Superheroic Train Keeps New York City's Subway Safe

You probably don't realize it, but, at any given hour on any given day, a small yet incredibly sophisticated train armed with cameras, lasers, and ultrasound equipment is sliding around New York City's subway system inspecting the tracks. It looks a little bit like Optimus Prime, and, like the good Transformers, it's… »5/06/14 10:00am5/06/14 10:00am

A Subterranean Stroll Through NYC's Newest Train Tunnel

New York City's new 2nd Avenue subway line is a construction project of truly monumental scale. Decades of planning and billions of dollars have led to the near-completion of Phase 1 of the tunnel running underneath Manhattan's Upper East Side. Gizmodo was lucky enough to take a tour through a section of the caverns… »5/02/14 12:20pm5/02/14 12:20pm

NYC's Touchscreen Subway Maps Are Finally Here, and They're Amazing

New York subway riders first were promised futuristic touchscreen wayfinding maps a year ago. But the plan to install the futuristic infrastructure stalled as the design team took a step back to improve the hardware. Six months overdue, the first batch is finally live in Grand Central Station. They were worth the wait. »2/12/14 11:00am2/12/14 11:00am