Oh Times Square. We have a lot of feelings about Times Square: like, on one hand, it's the center of desperate, neon advertising, and irritating panhandling.
Oh the other hand, Times Square is the most Instagrammed place in the world. On New Year's Eve, a night representative of glittering, fresh beginnings, the entire world turns its attention toward Times Square.
So, whether we like it or not, there's something enchanting about Times Square.
Here's what maybe you didn't know: did you know Times Square has a lot of secrets.
We're not that surprised to hear that there's gorgeous architecture hidden beneath the flashing billboards, nor that Times Square was once home to prostitution and sex shops.
However there are other, more obscure facts, and we're here to share them with you. Read on to learn Times Squares most well-kept secrets.
1. If you were in outer space, you could see Times Square
exploringglobe Above Times Square, New York Follow @b_picturess Photo by @andrejcie #Exploringglobe to be featured!
Can you believe that? If you're peering at earth from a close enough point in space, you can see Times Square illuminating the sky.
According to Travel and Leisure, Times Square is one of the few places astronauts could spot from outside the atmosphere.
So, the myth of light pollution isn't actually a myth. Instead of us being able to gaze at the stars from NYC, they can gaze at us from the stars.
2. There's a sound loop in Times Square that plays all the time
isleofnewyork Winter days in Times Square 🌨☃❄️ #TimesSquare #NewYork #NYC (credit: @vishnumohan95 )
Max Neuhaus is an artist who decorated the sound waves surrounding Times Square for all eternity.
He created a textured layering of sounds that play on a 24-hour-loop in the triangular area between 45th and 46th Streets and Broadway.
The installation is maintained by the Dia Foundation, which is behind Dia Beacon, plus other art installations brightening the creative spirit all around NYC.
It's been playing its unending loop since 1977.
"The piece isn't meant to startle," Neuhaus said. "It's meant for people who are ready to discover. In fact, I never do a work where everybody stops and notices it in a public place."
3. The New Years Eve Ball sits in One Times Square all year
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Everyone knows where the Ball is on New Years, because thousands of people watch it drop in Times Square in person, and billions more watch on TV.
However, do you know what happens with the Ball on the other 364 days of the year?
Untapped Cities reported that it sits behind an access door on the roof of the Walgreens Tower at 1 Times Square.
It's made of Waterford Crystal and LEDs, and it's 12-feet in diameter. Plus, it's completely computer controlled, which is good, because, it weighs nearly 12,000 pounds.,
4. One Times Square: lucrative but nearly empty
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Are you that surprised that the building with all the flashing billboards attached to its facade makes a lot of money but stands nearly empty? Because we aren't.
The Lehman Brothers bought One Times Square in 1995 for $27.5 million, and instead of renting out its space to companies, they started attaching billboards to the building's sides.
After two years, their profits were up 400%, and the inside was empty. Lehman Brothers, we have to tell you, we kind of hate you, but that was a pretty brilliant idea.
The building still hosts little more than Walgreens on the ground floor, and the offices of Countdown Entertainment. That company organizes all Times Square entertainment on New Year's Eve.
One Times Square's current net worth is $495 million.
5. The falling confetti used to be covered in wishes
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You've seen the New Year's Eve confetti that drops from the sky in Times Square, right?
Yeah, we knew you had. It's part of what makes the spot so celebratory on New Year's Eve.
Well, every year until 2014, visitors to the Times Square Visitor Center penned their New Year wishes on the little slips of confetti.
Then, when they're released to the sky on New Year's Eve, it wasn't just colored pieces of paper raining down on revelers heads: it was wishes.
The Visitor Center had a sampling of these wishes on a wall titled "Hopes and Dreams," covered in these wishes.
Sadly, the Visitor Center closed in August of 2014.
6. Times Square got its name because of The New York Times
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Oh, you didn't know that, huh?
Yeah, Times Square acquired its name after The New York Times, when, in 1904, the newspaper brought its headquarters there.
At that time, The New York Times advertised with "spectaculars," which were a mix of large, complex light displays and intricate designs.
Everyone was so blown away by The New York Times light displays that they ditched their traditional celebrations at Trinity Church, and started celebrating New Years Eve in Times Square.
As a result, the first New Year's Eve Ball was dropped in 1908.
Check out 4 Secrets About The Empire State Building You Probably Never Even Knew.[Feature Image Courtesy NY on Air]