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Monday, December 25, 2023

When Was Times Square Built? A Historical Overview

  Rajesh Kumar Rana       Monday, December 25, 2023

Times Square, also known as "The Crossroads of the World," is one of the most famous landmarks in New York City. It is a bustling commercial and entertainment hub, attracting millions of tourists from all over the world each year. But when was Times Square built, and how did it become the iconic landmark that it is today?

Times Square NYC
Times Square NYC
Image source: Wikimedia

When Was Times Square Built?

Times Square was not built in a single construction project but rather evolved over time. The area was originally known as Longacre Square and was renamed Times Square after The New York Times moved its headquarters to the site in 1904. The first buildings in the area were constructed in the late 1800s, and the area continued to grow and change throughout the 20th century. Today, Times Square is a bustling commercial and entertainment district that attracts millions of visitors each year.

History of Times Square

Originally known as Longacre Square, Times Square was named after The New York Times in 1904, when the newspaper moved its headquarters to the area. At the time, the area was mostly undeveloped, but it quickly became a popular location for theaters, hotels, and restaurants. By the 1920s, Times Square was the hub of the Broadway theater district and the site of the famous New Year's Eve ball drop.

Early Times Square

Times Square was first known as Longacre Square, named after London's carriage district. In 1904, the New York Times moved its headquarters to the area, and the square was renamed in its honor. This move helped transform the area into the bustling commercial and entertainment district we know today.

Times Square in the 20th Century

During the 1920s and 1930s, Times Square became the center of American theater and nightlife, attracting millions of visitors each year. However, the area began to decline in the 1960s due to economic downturns and increased crime.

The Revitalization of Times Square

In the 1990s, Times Square underwent a major revitalization effort, which included the installation of new billboards, street furniture, and the closing of streets to vehicles. Today, Times Square remains a major tourist destination, known for its bright lights, Broadway shows, and New Year's Eve celebration.

Recent Years

In recent years, Times Square has continued to evolve. The area has become even more commercialized, with many new retail stores and restaurants opening up. The billboards have also become even more elaborate, with some stretching several stories high.

Despite its many changes, Times Square remains a symbol of the energy, diversity, and creativity of New York City. It is a testament to the city's ability to adapt and reinvent itself over time.

Times Square Today

Today, Times Square is a major tourist destination, attracting visitors from all over the world. It is known for its bright neon lights, towering billboards, and bustling crowds. Times Square is also home to many popular attractions, including the famous TKTS booth, which offers discounted tickets to Broadway shows, and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum.

But Times Square is not just a place for tourists. It is also an important symbol of New York City, representing the energy, vibrancy, and diversity of the city. Many important events have taken place in Times Square, including political rallies, celebrations, and even a ticker-tape parade for the Apollo 11 astronauts.


Times Square has undergone many changes since its early days as Longacre Square, and it remains a symbol of American culture and entertainment. Whether you're a local or a tourist, Times Square is a must-see destination in New York City.

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