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Located in the Civic Center district of New York City’s Lower Manhattan is New York’s City Hall. NYC’s City Hall is the quarters to the city’s mayor and city council. NY’s City Hall building is the oldest building in the U.S. that currently remains functional for governmental purposes. New York City Hall is located between three streets, Broadway, Park Row and Chambers Street. The building was under construction for two years from 1810 until 1812. The City Hall’s exterior and interior are designated as New York City landmarks. It is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places and deemed a National Historic Landmark.
Throughout two centuries New York City Hall has been made up of three different buildings in New York City. New York’s primary City Hall stood on Pearl Street. The first City Hall was built in the 1700’s and demolished later in 1790. Also built in the 17th Century was New York’s second City Hall located on Wall Street and Nassau Street. During the Revolutionary War when New York was the first official capital of the United States, the second City Hall building became the Federal Hall. At that time the city council offices were relocated to which is now City Hall Park. In the beginning of the 18th Century, New York City held a design competition for architect to propose plans for the creation of the third and final City Hall of New York City. The winners Joseph Francois Mangin and John McComb Jr. were rewarded 350 dollars. Joseph F. Mangin presumed as the main designer for the new City Hall. He was also the architect for the St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral in New York City, previously located on Mulberry Street. McComb Jr. was additionally a part of the architectural detailing as he also overseen the construction. The initial proposed plan was objected by NY City Council because they felt the design was exaggeratedly elaborate. Mangin and McComb were forced back the drawing board to reduce the size and detailing of the design.
After Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865, his coffin was stored in the New York City’s third City Hall’s rotunda. The coffins of Ulysses S. Grant and Colonel Elmer Ephraim Ellsworth also lay in the rotunda of New York City Hall. The rotunda has been the site of many municipal and national events. The Governor’s Room of the NY City Hall, used for official receptions also houses historic artifacts and a significant collection of American portraiture from the 19th Century. George Washington’s desk, a notable artifact is being preserved in the Governor’s Room. New York’s third City Hall has endured several alterations by numerous notable architects such as Leopold Eidlitz, John H. Duncan, William Martin Aiken, Grosvenor Atterbury, Lamb & Harmon Shreve and Cabrera Barricklo. The Blue Room, a historic site in New York’s City Hall is where NYC Mayor generally gives official press conferences and host state bill-signing ceremonies. Room 9 at New York City Hall is the press room used by reporters filing stories. The staircase in City Hall is frequently used as the backdrop to press conferences and political demonstrations regarding city politics.
When visiting New York City the Civic Center in Manhattan is a district ideal for NYC tourist. The area consists of city, state and federal government offices as well as luxury residential communities. The Civic Center area is also a sightseeing destination in New York to additional architectural landmarks like Manhattan Municipal Building, the Park Row Building, St. Paul’s Chapel, St. Peters Church and the Brooklyn Bridge. The closest subway lines to New York City Hall are the IRT Lexington Avenue Line, BMT Broadway Line and IRT Broadway – Seventh Avenue Line. Public access to New York City Hall building is restricted. Unless you have exclusive business taking place within NY City Hall, a New York City tour is the only accessibility that will allow people visiting NYC to enter and tour the facilities.
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