Thursday, July 26, 2012

Rochester Subway Art

Subways in Rochester, MN? Yes, there are subways running under the downtown area, but the locals are quick to clarify to puzzled visitors that these are pedestrian subways - no trains to be found down there. The first subway dates back to the 1930's when the Kahler Grand decided to connect to the Mayo Clinic in a way that would keep patients and others from having to brave the elements going back and forth between appointments and sleeping accommodations. As the clinic grew, so did the subway system. It even has many retail shops along the way. There's also a skywalk system linking downtown hotels, parking ramps, clinic buildings and other places of interest. With Rochester's extremes in weather, this system is a real blessing. Yes, I've been using it every day to escape the heat and humidity. See a map showing subway in blue and skywalk in red here.

Every section looks a bit different depending on what building it may be running under. This section has several inviting alcoves like this one for those that may need to rest before reaching a destination.

And most sections of the subway system serve as art galleries. I walked by these animal screenprints many times before I realized they were by Andy Warhol.

This tells a little about them and the donor. Click on this or any picture for a larger view.

Don't know that the design in the rug was chosen with quilters in mind, but you can imagine we all think it was. 


Margaret Cooter said...

So civilised ... is it usually so empty?

The Idaho Beauty said...

Generally there's quite a bit of "traffic" but on these days I waited for breaks or it was a slow time. We joke sometimes that slow traffic needs to stay to the right to let us sprinters pass on the left like out on our highways.

Sherrie Spangler said...

Who would've guessed there was another world underground? It looks so clean and artistic. Are there Starbucks kiosks?