Café Discovery: Holiday Train Show – infrastructure

Back on January 8, Debbie and I took a trip to the New York Botanical Garden.  I brought along my new camera and took a lot of photos.

Previous sub-collections are available here:

Haupt Conservatory included some of the plant exhibits, including the desert succulents.

statuary displayed photos of three public art installations.

public spaces was the first part of the Holiday Train Show exhibition.

Today’s collection is part two of three of the latter.  Still to come will be (roughly) wealth, skyscrapers, and entertainment.

Clicking upon the photos should open larger versions in a new tab.

(left to right)St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Grand Central Station, the United Nations Secretariat Building.

I’m choosing a broad definition of “infrastructure” since this collection includes bridges, a lighthouse, churches, a monument, and…oh, yea…train stations and trains.  It was, after all, the Holiday Train Show.

Alas, the trains and the train track layout were disappointing.  The trains looked too much like toys and just seemed to run back and forth rather than winding their way through the model buildings.  And the lack of realism was daunting.  Last I looked, there was no train running through the Washington Square Arch.

And I suppose the little doodlebug trains would have been cool if I were a child.  But Debbie and I were really hoping for more realism.

But the arch was cool anyway.  🙂

The Union Pacific and Pennsylvania Railroad installations were more realistic, but tended not to do anything but either just travel from one end to another on a single segment of track or travel in an oval path.

So the best part of the train part of the exhibit had to be the stations, the bridges they just traveled back and forth on, from one end to the other, and the buildings they never actually traveled near. And unfortunately the buildings were arranged in neighborhoods they didn’t share.

The stations consisted of the Grand Central, shown up at the top at a distance and shown to the left in close-up, and the Sleepy Hollow station, which is guaranteed to bring a smile to all the Washington Irving fans. 🙂  There may have been another one or two, but not all of the photos came out well, especially the ones with some motion.

I took shots of two churches, St. Patrick’s Cathedral (shown to the left) and St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, which was located at 155 Cedar Street in Manhattan, across Liberty Street from the South Tower of the World Trade Center when it fell.  It was the only non-WTC building completely destroyed by the attacks, though two others were damaged beyond repair.

That pretty much leaves us with only the bridges and a couple of buildings underneath them.

There were three major bridges shown.   They dominated the exhibit.

One couldn’t have any exposition of the buildings of New York without including the Brooklyn Bridge, I’m sure.

To the left is a close-up with one of the toy trains which ran back and forth across it.

Shown at the base of one of the bridge columns was the South Street Seaport…and another bridge, much smaller in scale. 🙂

I only took one shot of the Manhattan Bridge.  And I have to admit it took me some research before I could identify this as that bridge.  I’m sure it would have been much easier for native New Yorkers.

And lastly there was the George Washington Bridge, which goes over the Hudson River, as opposed to the two others, which span the East River on the other side of Manhattan.

Again I have a close-up of a train crossing the GWB…where there should be cars…shown on the left.

Displayed below the bridge was a building which actually is at the east end of the bridge and under it, called the Little Red Lighthouse.  Being a lighthouse fan, this was one of my favorite pieces.


    • Robyn on February 2, 2009 at 00:15


    (Click on the graphic for a larger version)

    • Pluto on February 3, 2009 at 23:36

    In some ways, I wish I could spend the rest of my life building something like this. Hey… why can’t I?

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