Battery Park Control House

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 and 5 trains, the latter of which terminates here on evenings and weekends and does not stop here on late nights.

Bowling Green is the southernmost Manhattan station on the Lexington Avenue Line, and it is the southern terminal station for 5 trains on evenings and weekends. During weekdays, 5 trains continue to Brooklyn College – Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn. When 5 trains terminate here, they continue around either the inner or outer loop at the former South Ferry loop station 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. 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 Bowling Green–South Ferry Shuttle train providing service to South Ferry during those times. Even after the IRT Broadway – Seventh Avenue Line local service () began to South Ferry in 1918, the shuttle remained in operation until it was discontinued in 1977 due to budget cuts. The shuttle platform was renovated anyway in 1978 along with the rest of the station. 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.

In 2007, the passenger count for Bowling Green was 7,373,350.

Two elevators have been constructed to make the station ADA-compliant.

Control House

The Control house, known as the Bowling Green IRT Control House or Battery Park Control House, is located near the southern end of Broadway. This subway entrance was designed by Heins & LaFarge and built in 1905 on the west side of State Street, across from the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House.

Along with its twin, the old control house for the 72nd Street station, this building is a reminder of the glory of New York's first subway, the Interborough Rapid Transit Company, predecessor to the current routes. Although most of the original subway's entry points had steel and glass kiosks (for example, Astor Place), important stations like this one were marked with brick and stone control house, called such as they helped control the passenger flow. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Image gallery
  • The orange tiles on the walls date to the 1970s

  • Former shuttle platform on the Brooklyn-bound side


2 photos

Building Activity

  • OpenBuildings
    OpenBuildings updated 9 media, updated a digital reference, uploaded a media file and added a digital reference
    hnck bowling green irt 001
    about 6 years ago via
  • OpenBuildings
    OpenBuildings updated a digital reference
    about 6 years ago via Annotator