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Columbus Circle

2 Columbus Circle,
New York, NY 10019

* Google Maps street view [Stay Puft/Louis]
* Google Maps street view [Ecto-1]


Filming locations adjacent to this one will be included on this page. That includes: Corner of Central Park West & South (Louis scene); and 2 Columbus Circle & Broadway (Ecto-1 in GB2)

History - written by Chris Buchner (used with permission)
Columbus Circle is located at the South-West corner of Central Park at the entrance known as Merchant's Gate, named to honor commerce and business professions for their controbution to New York in 1862. Two monuments stand next to the park, the Columbus Monument and the Maine Monument.

The Columbus Monument was designed by Gaenato Russo in 1892 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the discovery of the New World. The statue symbolizes Columbus' travels around the globe on which he stands, and the putting ashore of the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria. The statue's presence here was due to the lobbying efforts of many Italian-Americans led by Carlo Barsotti.

The Maine Monument commemorates the 260 Americans that died when the U.S.S. Maine exploded in the harbor of Havanah, Cuba. The Spanish-American War began two months later in April 1898. The ware ended in December of that year, resulting in the liberation of Cuba from Spanish rule, ceded Puerto Rico and Guam, and gave the Philippines to the U.S. William Randolph Hearst called for a public collection of funds in his New York Morning Journal towards a monument 4 days after the disaster. The paper received huge monitary gifts and thousands of dollars in pennies from school children. The Bronze figure represents Columbia triumphant riding in a seashell charriot led by three hippocampi. It's claimed that the metal on the statue was reclaimed from the Maine itself.

That big, boxy white building that's on Stay Puft's left (our right) as he makes his entrance in the first film, and that the Ecto-1 drives past at the beginning of the second film, was one of Columbus Circle's most unique and recognizable buildings: 2 Columbus Circle. Designed by Edward Durell Stone and built in 1964, it housed the Gallery of Modern Art, founded by Huntington Hartford. The facade brought mixed feelings to New Yorkers, as it's box shape featured absolutely no windows at all until the 9th and 10th floors. A series of "vent" designs dot the corners and cartoony lollipop designs adored the ground floor. It was a far leap from anything ever built in New York before, especially by Stone.

In 1969, the Gallery closed and Hartford donated the building to Fairleigh Dickinson University. The University ran it as an alternative arts center until it became too costly to maintain. Gulf & Western bought the building in 1975 and then donated it in 1976 to the city for its department of cultural affairs. Over the course of the next two decades, the building steadily decayed, forcing the department to vacate in 1998. It has been abandoned since.

The city made it available in 1996 and numerous bids poured in. Most plans included the destruction or alteration of the building. The Museum of Arts and Design had won the bidding process and started modifying the facade of the building in late 2005 by adding windows and tera cota to it. The new facade was finished in 2008. The Landmarks Commission had investigated the building in 1998 to consider it for landmark status, which would have protected it as is forever, but turned it down. Public outcry for maintaining the building had been overwhelming, but officials turned a deaf ear towards the people.


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