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A Century of Spectacle at Times Square

On April 8, 1904 the mayor of New York City renamed bustling Longacre Square after a new tenant: The New York Times. Since then, Times Square has had its ups and downs. It became emblematic of New York's decline into crime and drugs in the 1970s, then re-emerged over the next 20 years as a tourist destination.

From its seedier days to its takeover by corporate megastores, there's one thing that hasn't changed, says NPR's Robert Smith: The energy that comes from tens of thousands of people converging on Broadway, 42nd Street and Seventh Avenue for action and fun.

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Robert Smith is a host for NPR's Planet Money where he tells stories about how the global economy is affecting our lives.