Penn Station is no stranger to redevelopment. Most recently, the transportation hub’s busiest entrance has been completely rebuilt just before what’s projected to be the busiest holiday travel season ever.
The entrance, located at 7th Avenue and 32nd Street, has expanded its width by 50 percent to improve safety and ease overcrowding. It’s now fully ADA-accessible and draws natural light and air down into the concourse. The project was a public-private partnership between Amtrak and Vornado Realty Trust.
“The new entrance is safer, more accessible, more spacious and far more inviting for the hundreds of thousands of people who travel through Penn Station every day. Intentionally and systematically, we are transforming the PENN DISTRICT into the new epicenter of Manhattan – a remarkable place to live, work, and experience the best that New York has to offer,” said Steven Roth, CEO of Vornado Realty Trust.
Additional entrance features include a new elevator, more escalators, wider sidewalks, a light-filled canopy, and visibility from Park Avenue and other eastern points.
The new glass canopy and interior lighting feature was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Lord Norman Foster’s firm, Foster + Partners. Vornado also secured a space for art with a ginormous new LED light installation atop the canopy.
“This project is an important step towards a wider transformation that looks to enhance the quality of the spaces between buildings and make the busiest transportation hub in North America welcoming and inviting for all,” said Nigel Dancey, Head of Studio, Foster + Partners.
Penn Station has seen more than $300 million in capital improvement investments in the last five years.
“We are proud to roll out the welcome mat to our new, modern entrance for the 600,000 daily New York Penn Station visitors,” said Amtrak CEO Stephen Gardner. “Having a direct, accessible entrance at 32nd and 7th will improve the customer experience for all passengers as they can now take an elevator, walk down wider stairs and have an added, third escalator to help them enter or exit the station.”