A new $1.6 billion train hall at New York City’s Penn Station will be unveiled to the public on Wednesday, significantly expanding North America’s busiest train terminal amid a public transit crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The construction of a new concourse in the iconic Farley Post Office building across Eighth Avenue from Penn Station had been talked about for decades before being set on a concrete path by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in 2016.
The 255,000 square-foot Moynihan Train hall, named for the late U.S. Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who championed the project, will serve passengers on Amtrak and the Long Island Rail Road when it opens for business on Jan. 1, 2021.
Featuring a 92-foot high glass skylight and a lounge for nursing mothers, the new facility is designed to provide more space for the notoriously congested transit hub, which served some 650,000 people daily before the pandemic.
In a statement on Sunday, Cuomo hailed the project as a “shot of hope” amid the dark days of the pandemic and said its completion was proof the health crisis did not stop New Yorkers “from dreaming big and building for the future.”
Construction began in 2017 and the project was completed on time and within budget, Cuomo said.