The abandoned City Hall BMT station (Lower Level) – 2004

Published on: December 9th, 2015 | Last updated: December 8, 2015 Written by:

The abandoned lower level platform at City Hall is the only abandoned subway station in NYC that is used to store subway trains.

The lower level platform of this station was originally built with the intent of allowing Broadway line express trains to continue south of city hall. The local tracks in the active station above were originally intended to be a terminal, were local trains would be turned and routed back north. This plan changed, however, when it was decided to send the express trains out over Manhattan Bridge.

Thus, this lower level abandoned platform never saw a single passenger train. Instead it became a convenient place to store trains during off peak hours. It was designed similar to the Whitehall street station – with a third track in the center of the station for turning trains in either direction.

South of the station, the tunnel dead ends as the ceiling slopes downward. This stretch of abandoned tunnel is filled with pools of water – and for a long time those pools of water were covered with dust from the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11.



One fine Christmas night, a group of us reprobates got together and invaded this abandoned platform. There’s a lot of fun to be had in throwing caution to the wind and running with a pack into the unknown. This was a relatively calculated risk, of course. We timed it to avoid all kinds of trains, or so we thought.

We found the doors to a layup train open, which made it far easier and significantly less dangerous to simply walk through the train than trying to squeeze through no-clearance walled tracks stacked with laid up trains.

After numerous stops for photos, we found the station well lit and devoid of life.






Eventually we made our way back towards our exit point, only to run into what always comes in the subway tunnels: the unexpected. At strong risk of being caught, we made our escape into the bitterly cold night. Knowing it best to get off the streets, we made our way into a nearby hotel where we found a coffee/hot chocolate machine to pilfer and loot warm drinks from. We chilled out and left awhile later when we were sure the heat on the street had died down, splitting up, with everyone content that we had given ourselves the best holiday present money can’t buy.



6 responses to “The abandoned City Hall BMT station (Lower Level) – 2004”

  1. Ant says:

    The other day I was on the upper level of the station during late nights, just to get a feel of this station and to see how often the N train passes by just in case I need to make a run for Canal st. Its very easy to get there, its just around the drop off location seems a little iffy but I’m not too worried. This station is next.

  2. Ant says:

    I went this station yesterday and it was easy getting there but I was with my cousin and it was more difficult because I had to watch his back while watching mines, its even harder when your with one who doesn’t have decent enough knowledge when it comes to the NYC Subway. There were a few workers nearby and he got nervous, tho I don’t blame him cause who wouldn’t? But I wanted to explore the station I was aiming for but couldn’t. Is there anyone out there who also shares the same hobby who is willing to team up and explore some places with me? I need somebody who has decent amount of knowledge for what we will be doing. Anyone out there?

  3. Koshik says: Hey ant, I want to go exploring please contact me through gmail

  4. Ant says:

    Tried to contact you Koshik, no response tho

  5. alt0id says:

    Hey Ant-

    I’d love to explore with you sometime, please hit me up through gmail

  6. John says:

    It seems the only way to get there is through canal. At city hall there are 1 way Windows that face the end of the platform. You can’t tell if a worker is looking at you, too dangerous to jump down. The only viable spot to get here from looks like Canal St, which is really far and has a ton of people.

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  • About The Author

    Bad Guy Joe

    Bad Guy Joe
    Bad Guy Joe knows more about the NYC underground than anyone else on or below the surface of this planet. He has spent nearly 30 years sneaking into NYC's more forbidden locations. When not underground, he's probably bitching about politicians or building something digital. 
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