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Posted 11/10/2017

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By Michael Embrich
Public Affairs

On November 10th, 2017 a contingent of joint armed forces recruiting commands joined the Army Corps New York District and the North Atlantic Division for a ribbon cutting ceremony at the U.S. Armed Forces Recruiting Center at Times Square. The ribbon was cut by a joint service group of commanders that included Major General Garrett Harencak, Commander, Air Force Recruiting Service, Lieutenant Colonel Judd Floris, Commander, NYC Army Recruiting Battalion, Colonel Ivan Monclova, Commander, 1st Marine Corp District, Colonel Robert Hailey, Acting Deputy Commander, North Atlantic Division, and Commander Christian Gaskill, Commander, Navy Recruiting District New York.  

After the ribbon cutting recruits from each branch of our Nation’s Armed Forces, were sworn in with the iconic Times Square in the background. They will join a proud tradition of 250,000 volunteers who join our armed forces each year.

“Overall, the modernization of the Times Square Recruiting Center will include upgrades to the facility and will keep with the world-class reputation of our Nation's military services and serve to attract potential recruits while directly improving the quality of life of the recruiters who will work there,” Said Colonel Thomas Asbery, Commander, US Army Corps of Engineers, New York District. “We are so honored to be able to turn over the Times Square Armed Forces Recruiting Center to the joint forces who join us here today, this center will greatly assist them in their recruiting efforts. The New York District takes great pride in its ability to deliver the highest quality facilities to our military partners.” Colonel Asbery continued.

The Recruiting Center is located in the shadow of the Times Tower skyscraper, a major focal point of Times Square in the middle of New York City where the annual New Year's Eve "ball drops" at the introduction of the New Year.

The busiest recruiting center in the United States also happens to be one of the smallest. But this tiny recruiting center got some big upgrades and those upgrades were spearheaded by the US Army Corps of Engineers, New York District.  New York District owns the recruiting center and is in charge of managing its building. The center is located in the heart of the iconic Times Square on 43rd Street between Broadway and 7th Ave. in midtown Manhattan. The recruiting center was constructed in 1945 to serve as the US Armed Forces’ only one stop recruiting center. Now, over 70 years and many upgrades later, the recruiting center no longer resembles “the booth,” as it once was called.

The appearance of the Times Square Recruiting Center has changed many times to keep up with the many changes of its neighboring buildings in Times Square. The interior upgrades compliment upgrades performed outside of the center in 2011. The upgrade in 2011 consisted of the replacement and installation of illuminated energy efficient light-emitting diodes (LED) that makes up the American flags on both sides of the center, which were designed to match the bright lights and gleam of Times Square proper. The current upgrade focused on the inside of the center and replaced fire alarms and electrical systems. The roof was also upgraded to facilitate drainage of water that accumulates on it after rain and snow storms. Plywood subflooring and rubber flooring was also installed.

The most observable upgrade was the installation of light-emitting diode (LED) monitors that produce the “Times Square effect” on the inside and outside. Roughly 300,000 pedestrians pass through Times Square every day—and the new Recruiting Center's exterior signage and neon American Flag blend in with the neon glitz of the intersection’s high-wattage marquees that ensure that it’s always bright, even late at night.