Moynihan Station Is the First Big TIGER Stimulus Winner

New York City’s Moynihan Station project has snagged $83 million in grant money from the stimulus law’s Transportation Investments Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) announced today.

moynihan_articlebox.jpgA rendering of the proposed Moynihan Station. (Photo: The Real Deal)

The grant makes the intended successor to the current Penn Station, a longstanding priority for New York’s congressional delegation, the first winner in a highly competitive chase for $1.5 billion in federal transport funding aimed at moving the U.S. DOT towards a more merit-based decision-making process.

The TIGER funding will allow the project to begin its Phase I of construction, which includes building vertical access points from the street to the new transit hub. Work should begin by the end of the year, according to Friends of Moynihan Station, a private-sector advocacy group founded by the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s (D-NY) daughter.

Station is the poster child for the best way to use federal funding —
it creates jobs, upgrades aging transportation infrastructure, and
leaves behind an economic engine for the entire region," Schumer said in a statement.

Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer also hailed the federal grant through his spokeswoman: "For too long, Moynihan Station has been stopped dead in its tracks. Now
that our congressional delegation has been able to secure a down payment, we
can begin moving forward on this project, which will create jobs, ease
congestion, boost tourism, and right the wrongs of half a century ago" — a reference to the destruction of the original, above-ground Penn Station, which urbanist pioneer Jane Jacobs fought to preserve.

The rest of the Obama administration’s TIGER grants are expected to reach public view starting tomorrow, with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood slated to visit Tuscon (hoping for streetcar aid) and Kansas City (home to the ambitious Green Impact Zone).

  • Someday I’ll be able to take the subway from the 96th St. West Side IRT station, now under reconstruction, to Moynihan Station. That will be a happy day.

  • Mark, unless you change at 59th, you’ll have a good distance to walk; Moynihan Station will be on the west side of 8th Avenue, a long block away from the 1/2/3 station.

  • Jonathan, I’d assumed that there would be a tunnel from the 7th Ave. line to the station at 8th Ave., like the one connecting the IRT to the Port Authority Bus Terminal. Did I assume wrong? Does the new design sever the direct pedestrian link between the IRT and Penn Station?

  • Mark can walk through the double-wide 33rd Street Connector:

    This first phase includes:

    – building two new entrances to Penn Station’s platforms from West of Eighth Avenue through the corners of the Farley Building,
    – doubling the length and width of the West End Concourse,
    – providing 13 new “vertical access points” (escalators, elevators and stairs) to the platforms,
    – doubling the width of the 33rd Street Connector between Penn Station and the West End Concourse, as well as
    – other critical infrastructure improvements including platform ventilation and catenary work.

    I’m still not sold on the main part of this project, but Phase 1 sounds like it’ll actually be useful all by itself.

  • Thanks Cap’n!

  • Mike

    Is “33rd Street Connector” a euphemism for the LIRR concourse? Or something else?

  • Mike, I think it’s actually the passageway that goes under the Eighth Avenue Subway (A/C/E lines) at the western end of the LIRR concourse.

  • Andrew

    I’m hardly a fan of Penn Station as it exists today, but given the gaping hole in the MTA’s budget (capital and operating alike), is this really where our elected officials should be focusing?

  • Andrew, of course it’s where city officials should be focusing – it’s a prime megaproject to trumpet how the West Side is getting Development. It’s all part of the Hudson Yards game, also there to promote Development. If we can name this after a dead politician whose family is still powerful, then all the better.

  • Cap’n, thanks for clearing that up about the 33rd St Connector.

  • How will this interact with NJ Transit’s new Penn Station for their new tunnel?

  • They’re both colossal but separate money wastes. The new deep-level Penn Station is there to solve a nonexistent track capacity problem, the new Moynihan Station is there to name something after Moynihan and solve a nonexistent concourse capacity problem.

  • This is wonderful news. The existing Penn Station/Madison Square Garden complex is a terrible reminder of the wanton destruction visited on American cityscapes post-World War II. In the process, buildings and even entire neighborhoods that made cities attractive and livable were irretrievably lost. New York deserves a world-class train station where, to paraphrase architectural critic Vincent Scully, one can enter the city like a god, not scuttle in like a rat.

    We should rejoice that money is being spent on a train station rather than a pedestrian-hostile (and neighborhood uglifying) shopping mall or, worse, an expressway.

  • I agree with Urbanis. Beauty is an underrated virtue and the function of beauty in our lives is poorly understood.

  • Morlock

    Moynihan fans, some distant day in the future, we Morlocks will toast your god like entries to the future multi-billion dollar Moynihan station by waving around our $500 monthly Metrocards. There will be lots of time for symbolic gestures as we wait and wait in the grungy, poorly lit, half-flooded subway stations.

  • Ace

    More trains more often especially late at night. After that is done spend 2 billion dollars to move LIRR and NJTransit another city block away from the B,D,F,V,N,and R trains.

  • Tom

    Great that Moynihan is getting funded. Too bad that the dozen other worthy NYC capital projects vying for this money got nada.


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