Madison Square is formed by the intersection of 5th Avenue and Broadway at 23rd Street in Manhattan. It was named after James Madison, fourth President of the United States.
Two venues called Madison Square Garden were located just northeast of the square, the first from 1879 to 1890, and the second from 1890 to 1925. The first Garden, leased to P. T. Barnum, had no roof and was inconvenient to use during inclement weather, so it was demolished after 11 years.
Madison Square Garden II designed by noted architect Stanford White was a Beaux-Arts structure in a Moorish style, including a tower modeled after Giralda, the bell tower of the Cathedral of Seville. Madison Square Garden II was unsuccessful like the first Garden, and the New York Life Insurance Company, which held the mortgage on it, decided to tear it down in 1925 to make way for a new headquarters building, which would become the landmark Cass Gilbert-designed New York Life Building.
A third Madison Square Garden opened in a new location, on 8th Avenue between 49th and 50th Streets, from 1925 to 1968. Groundbreaking on the third Madison Square Garden took place on January 9, 1925. The arena was 200 feet (61 m) by 375 feet (114 m), with seating on three levels, and a maximum capacity of 18,496 spectators for boxing.
Demolition commenced in 1968 after the opening of the current Garden and was completed in early 1969. The new structure was one of the first of its kind to be built above the platforms of an active railroad station. As of now,
Madison Square Garden is seen as an obstacle in the renovation and future expansion of Penn Station.