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Bowling Green is a station on the IRT Lexington Avenue Line of the New York City Subway. Located at Broadway and Battery Place (at the Bowling Green), in the Financial District of Manhattan, it is served by the 4 train (all times), and by the 5 train (all times except late nights).
Bowling Green is the southernmost Manhattan station on the Lexington Avenue Line, and it is the southern terminal station for 5 trains, except at rush hours, when 5 trains continue to Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn. When 5 trains terminate here, they continue around the inner loop at South Ferry and return on the uptown track.
The station has two tracks and two platforms in service: a center island platform that serves downtown (Brooklyn-bound) trains, and a side platform that serves uptown trains. An abandoned island platform on the west side of the station was formerly used by the shuttle train to the inner platform at South Ferry.
When the station opened in 1905, there was as yet no IRT service to Brooklyn, and all Lexington Avenue trains terminated at South Ferry, using the outer-loop platform that serves 1 trains today. After the Joralemon Street Tunnel opened in 1908, some Lexington Avenue trains continued to terminate at South Ferry, even during rush hours, while others went to Brooklyn. This service pattern was soon found to be inadequate for the high volume of Brooklyn riders.
Just three months after the Joralemon Tunnel opened, construction began on the third track and the western platform at Bowling Green. Once they were completed, in 1909, all rush-hour trains were sent to Brooklyn, with a two or three-car shuttle train providing service to South Ferry during those times. The shuttle remained in operation until it was discontinued in 1977 due to budget cuts, although the shuttle platform was renovated anyway in 1978. The 1978 renovation covered over the original Heins & LaFarge mosaic "tapestries" that were along the walls.
The 1970s renovation also led to the construction of the eastern side platform, again due to high passenger volume on the island platform. Additional exits were requested and an underpass was built, funneling some of the traffic away from the headhouse exit at the south end. This led to the station's current configuration, with uptown trains using the east side platform, and downtown trains using the island platform. A fence is located along the eastern edge of the island platform, preventing northbound trains from releasing passengers onto the island platform (similar to the configuration at Broadway Junction on the BMT Canarsie Line). The fare control now consists of the restored headhouse entrance at the south end, which serves only the island platform, and various other entrances that lead to the eastern side platform and down to a large fare control gate area in the underpass.
Two elevators are currently under construction to make the station ADA-compliant.
- nycsubway.org — IRT East Side Line: Bowling Green
- Station Reporter — 4 Train
- Station Reporter — 5 Train
- Abandoned Stations —Bowling Green & South Ferry platforms