A Quick Look at the Upper West Side’s Acclaimed Lincoln Center

Lincoln Center is one of the definitive highlights of the Upper West Side neighborhood of New York City. Originally designed as part of Robert Moses’ urban renewal project for the city, Lincoln Center is a massive, 16-acre complex in the Lincoln Square area. Today, the center is home to live arts performances, festivals, cinemas, and schools.

The Plan

The plan for Lincoln Center was first developed in 1955, and the complex was under construction throughout the 1960s. The first building to be finished was the Philharmonic Hall, known now as David Geffen Hall, and the home of the NY Philharmonic. Throughout the decade, additional theaters opened. The last building constructed in the complex became the home of the Juilliard School.


Many cultural and performing arts organizations call Lincoln Center home. There are 11 arts organizations at the complex. The New York City Ballet performs out of the David Koch Theater, which was formerly the New York State Theater. The Met opera performs out of the Metropolitan Opera House. The Walter Reade Theater is home to the Film Society of Lincoln Center.

The Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center, the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, is also located at the Lincoln Center complex. The library is home to an extensive archive of theatrical and live arts performances on tape, as well as rare materials for people conducting performing arts research.

In addition to having access to regular seasons of its resident companies, people living in apartments near Lincoln Center also have access to several festivals and special events each year. An annual highlight is the Lincoln Center Festival, which takes place in July. The festival features theater, dance, and musical performances from companies and artists from around the globe.

The complex’s architecture and design is also extraordinary. The main plaza, Josie Robertson Plaza, lies between three major theaters. In the center of the plaza is the Revson Fountain, which is lit up and operating all year-round. The fountain has made an appearance in a number of movies and serves as an ideal meeting point for people attending a play, concert, or ballet together.

Getting to Lincoln Center

Lincoln Center is easily accessible by the NYC subway. The closest station is on the 1, 2, and 3 lines at 66th street. Other nearby stations include 59St/Columbus Circle, where the 1, A, B, C, and D trains stop and 72nd street, where the 1,2, and 3 stop. The M66 bus also stops near Lincoln Center. There is also a taxi stand in front of Josie Robertson Plaza.

Dining in the Area

There are several dining options in and around Lincoln Center. Amy’s Bread Cafe is located inside the library, serving sweets and sandwiches on weekdays and Saturdays. A number of fine dining establishments are located in the theaters themselves, such as the American Table CafĂ© and Bar by Marcus Samuelsson, which is in Alice Tully Hall, and The Grand Tier Restaurant, which is found in the Metropolitan Opera House. The Grand Tier restaurant takes reservations from ticket holders to all Lincoln Center performances and is open for two hours prior to performances.partm

Moving to The Upper West Side

Discover helpful resources and information on moving to the Upper West Side of New York City.

Moving to the Upper West Side