Sorry about the blurry image — my Panasonic Lumix does not do well in subway tunnels, or I don’t know the setting to make it work (my IPhone actually does better down here, and my other photos today using the Lumix came out all right).
West 4th Street is a key nexus in the subways. It’s an all Independent Subway station, constructed by NYC in the 1930s into 1940 to serve Manhattan’s West Side. The older IRT’s westernmost line ran on Broadway and 7th Avenue, while the 6th and 9th Avenue Els survived into the early 40s. West 4th has two levels of tracks, the basement tracks going up 6th Avenue (B/D/F/M), the upper tracks (A/C/E) heading up Greenwich and 8th Avenues.
While the city has been absolutely zealous about removing older forms of signage, especially the IND’s original white porcelain signs with black letters and numbers, the center pillars here on the B/D/F/M level still have the 1930s-era signs, and for all I know a lot of IND stations still sport these. They’d be a pain in the neck to remove, necessitating stoppage of service wherever the workmen set up. I think we’ll have these for quite a while yet.