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MAS Response to Paterson’s Moynihan Station Plan

moynihan penn station concept rendering som

Today Governor David Paterson announced conditions related to the future of Moynihan Station at New York Building Congress forum. Kent Barwick, President of Municipal Art Society, commented on the Governor’s plans:

“The original Penn Station, while architecturally spectacular, was primarily a visual symbol of a great transportation system. The tunnels that lead into that station, which connected New York City to the mainland for the first time, were engineering marvels of the time. The Penn Station architecture was important and beloved, but the infrastructure it housed was a critical element of New York City’s rise to its position as the nation’s greatest city.

“Paterson reminds us that, at this time in our history, it’s time to revive the railroad, and we couldn’t agree more with his priorities. We must put transportation first. Penn Station was built in the beginning of 20th century, and we are confident that it is possible now, at the beginning of the 21st century, to accomplish the Governor’s transportation priorities while also creating the great entryway into New York City that Senator Moynihan envisioned.

“Paterson’s plan of investment in the economy and our rail system shows a comprehensive grasp of all of the issues that the station embodies, from infrastructure to architecture. When MAS conducted a poll last year, we learned that people were dismayed with the inefficient and sloppy management of Penn Station. We know it will be difficult to work through the management problems with the three railroads, but we are confident it is possible.

“We support the Governor’s approach and vision and we are pleased that the Port Authority has been given responsibility for this project — they have the capacity, resources and management to bring this project to fruition. We look forward to deputy secretary Gilchrist’s plan of action.”