Letter to the Editor

Sir - Your appreciation 'Grand Central Terminal restored' (RG 12.98 p841) might have rung with more appropriate clarity. Carrol LV Meeks' appellation 'megalomania' is out of context; he was describing the tranche of station design and building from 1880 to 1914. This reference to grandiose delusions missed the mark - there was nothing delusional about the railways' undertakings at the time. Meeks' 1956 assertion that 'Grand Central Station in New York, now nearly half a century old, was and is one of the outstandingly successful stations of history' remains true today.

The circumferential driveway was an element in Charles Reed's original 1903 concept, but was omitted in the Warren & Wetmore revisions of 1909. The drive was ultimately incorporated at the urging of the City Fathers and the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad, which over the years accounted for approximately 50% of GCT traffic, took significantly greater advantage of the electrification, and was a part of the 'tripartite' ownership of the terminal.

That the Terminal provides access to subway lines (correctly two, not five) should not be taken as an inference that meaningful numbers of rail passengers continue their journeys underground; this has never been the case.

Alan M Levitt

Fresh Meadows, New York, USA