Monday, January 08, 2007

Rockefeller's Underground Escape Route Discovered?

740 Park Avenue has long been considered the most prestigious address on the island of Manhattan. Built 75 years ago, it has been home to Vanderbilts, Bouviers, Rockefellers, and royalty. To purchase an apartment in the building, you must be more than just wealthy—you must be among the world’s super-rich.

For decades, 740 Park Avenue has also been at the center of one of Manhattan’s most beloved “urban myths.” According to rumor, shortly after the building opened, John D. Rockefeller Jr. built an underground “escape route” beneath it. The tunnel is said to have led from the basement to nearby subterranean train tracks where the Rockefeller private train could carry John Jr. away from the city.

Most, including the Rockefeller family, claim that the story is pure fantasy. Now, however, it seems that there may be more truth to the tale than previously thought.

Last summer, members of the NYC Water Works were working 15 feet beneath the street outside 740 Park Avenue when they happened upon an old vault. Inside, the plumbers discovered a series of hidden chambers connected to the building’s basement. Each had an arched ceiling roughly 10 feet in height and walls composed of old bricks. No one seems to know what purpose the forgotten chambers may have served, but some have suggested that they are part of a lost tunnel built not by the Rockefellers, but by their neighbors, the Vanderbilts.

Of course this underground discovery is not the first for the NYC Water Works, who’ve found everything from abandoned pools to forgotten barber shops deep beneath Manhattan.


Anonymous theatre said...

that is so awesome!! it would be really cool if there really did turn up to be tunnels

3:08 PM  
Blogger theatre said...

that sounds so cool:)

4:14 PM  

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