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Gabe Pressman Supports Moynihan Station Development

WNBC’s Gabe Pressman, in a 6 July 2007 column, [Will Moynihan’s Dream Come True?] joins with Senator Moynihan’s widow, Liz, and daughter, Maura, in supporting the Vornado and Related Companies [unnamed in column] plan for development. He also dismisses unspecified criticisms from ‘civic groups’ in a manner that would probably not please the civic-minded senator.

Pressman acknowledges the contributions of Senator Moynihan:

“The late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan had a dream to convert the old Farley Post Office on Eighth Avenue into a new Penn Station. Moynihan, a scholar, an intellectual and a man who never shirked a fight for a good cause, deplored the fact that the old Penn Station had been destroyed to make way for Madison Square Garden. Whenever he recalled how the wrecker’s ball had destroyed the beautiful facade of the old Penn Station, it made him angry.”

He continues:

“Moynihan also deplored the seeming inability of New York to undertake grand projects. But now, after many stops and starts, the future of the station that will be named after the late senator seems assured. His widow, Liz Moynihan, told me: ”If it doesn’t happen now, it never will. This is the best chance we’ll ever have to rebuild the West Side.”

He cites the support of Governor Spitzer and Mayor Bloomberg for this plan:

“New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg are strongly behind this plan — and, in celestial terms, they are two key stars that need to be aligned. But there are a few other problems that may hold things up. The developers have some reservations, but it appears that ultimately they’ll go along with the grand plan. Also, some of the civic groups that deal with major changes in New York’s landscape have been nitpicking on some minor details.”

Finally, he offers his support and dismisses any criticism of the plan:

“But it’s time to brush aside all the naysayers and nitpickers. It’s been 44 years since this architectural homicide took place.”

It’s good that Pressman finds this an exciting project and that he respects the contributions of Senator Moynihan and his family. Let’s just be sure that his rejection of criticism does not impair the quality of this development. Open the review process to the sunlight of public review and ensure that the new Penn Station does not suffer from the assaults that buried the current Penn Station under Madison Square Garden.