The decades-old wooden benches we’ve become accustomed to in New York City subway stations are now up for sale. For $650 you can purchase a piece of salvaged New York history from the MTA. The relics are being sold to make way for new steel benches that the MTA predicts will be easier to clean.
Relics of old New York are always being salvaged and resold. Wood from the Coney Island Boardwalk and from the iconic Mars Bar have been reclaimed and sold for furniture and architectural accents. Old subway tokens have been upcycled into pendants for necklaces. So why not continue the nostalgia for subway memorabilia and New York history by adding an authentic MTA bench to your collection?
The wooden benches have for sure seen their share of wear and tear. We can all attest to regularly seeing homeless people sleep on them and drunk people puke on them — and yet when faced with a tiresome day, we’ve been known to sit on them ourselves. The troubled MTA hopes to raise funds with the sale of the benches on their website, albeit with the hefty pricetag. Surplus and out of date subway goods are regularly sold on the MTA’s site, from mechanical parts to furniture, and the benches join them as pieces of subway ephemera. Maybe if the pieces are sold, our fares won’t get another hike… we can dream, right?