34th Street: Herald Square Walking Tour
Nested in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, Herald Square is an urban green space that’s named after a former newspaper company. This wedge-shaped plaza is officially managed by the New York City Department of Parks. The James Gordon Bennett Memorial is a historic landmark that dominates the scene at Herald Square.
Features and Highlights
Herald Square has a roughly triangular shape that occupies slightly more than 0.2 acres. The centerpiece of this small public square is the James Gordon Bennett Memorial. Dedicated in 1895, this enormous installation honors the founder of the New York Herald. The Parisian sculptor Antonin Jean Carles was the chief artist of this landmark.
A figure of the Roman goddess Minerva dominates the scene of the memorial. This mythical deity stands near two male bell ringers who assume submissive and hard-working poses. The three figures are supported by an elevated pedestal with an arch and other Neoclassical elements. A clock with Roman intervals is also installed at the top of the James Gordon Bennett Memorial. Additionally, a metallic plaque with an inscription is installed at the base of the monument. The text highlights the important impacts that the New York Herald had on printed media in New York City.
Herald Square is covered in wide paved sidewalks that are lined with beautiful flowers, shrubs, and dense trees. Wrought iron fencing is installed along the perimeter of most of the park. The northern end of the square includes restrooms that are open to the public. Additionally, some vendors are based in this part of the square on a seasonal basis.
As one of the largest department stores in the world by retail space, Macy’s historic flagship store is located near Herald Square. Dozens of other shops, including the Manhattan Mall, are also situated within walking distance of the park. Therefore, the square has become a popular resting spot for shoppers who may need to carry multiple bags to local bus stops or underground train stations.
Established in 1835, the New York Herald was one of the most distributed newspapers in New York City for nearly a century. This publication covered local stories in a sensational style of journalism. By the end of the 19th century, numerous newspaper entities established headquarters in the part of Manhattan that’s now known as Midtown.
The New York Herald officially shut down in 1924 as it was acquired by the New York Tribune. Subsequently, the New York Herald Tribune had a successful run until the 1960s. In fact, this new newspaper claimed numerous Pulitzer Prizes and other awards in the industry. Before the merger, the New York Tribute was the main rival of the New York Herald. Situated just a few blocks away from Herald Square, Greeley Square is named after the founder of the New York Tribune.
Visiting Herald Square
The southern tip of Herald Square is formed by the intersections of Broadway, 6th Avenue, and 34th Street. The northern part of the square is defined by 35th Street. Served by eight lines of the New York City Subway, the 34th Street-Herald Square station is one of the busiest in Manhattan. This important underground rail hub offers convenient links with Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens.
Additionally, PATH trains connect Herald Square with various points in New Jersey, such as Hoboken and Jersey City. Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) buses also stop within walking distance of Herald Square. Having a central location in Midtown, the square is also a popular drop-off or pickup location for taxis.
Location: intersections of Broadway, 6th Avenue, and 34th Street, New York City, NY
Click here to visit Herald Square official website.