Scenes from Penn Station’s New West End Concourse

Image: Joseph Cutrufo/TSTC

New York’s Penn Station is crowded, deplorableugly, miserable, leakythe worst.

But Penn Station’s new West End Concourse, the first phase of the Moynihan Train Hall project, is anything but. And as NY1’s Pat Kiernan put it, “For a change, people are talking about something they like about Penn Station.”

Good news involving our nation’s busiest rail station is rare, so MTR decided to have a closer look at the new facility, which opened today.

Here’s the entrance at 8th Avenue and 33rd Street:

And the interior just after entering at 33rd Street:

Here’s the view from just beyond the entrance at 31st Street:

The concourse is brightly lit and decked out in a not-so-subtle New York State color palette.

The concourse ceilings are low, not unlike what you’ll find at Penn Station across the street, but the lighting and reflective paneling helps disguise just how low they are.

The stairs down to the tracks are somewhat more inviting — and certainly more colorful — than the track access points at Penn Station, which look like they might be utility closets.

Here’s the first glimpse of the new concourse from a disembarking passenger’s perspective:

There are a handful of enormous LED screens which display track information as well as panoramic photos of attractions around New York…

… and of course, there are charging stations.

Signage throughout the interior is big and bold.

If you look closely, you can see Penn Station across 8th Avenue.

And look who we spotted on the street: NY1’s very own Jose Martinez.

Access to Penn Station on the west side of 8th Avenue is certainly useful, and this new concourse is a welcome addition. But in order to take on the biggest challenges facing the congested, overcrowded rail hub, much more needs to be done.

4 Comments on "Scenes from Penn Station’s New West End Concourse"

  1. “The concourse ceilings are low, not unlike what you’ll find at Penn Station across the street, but the lighting and reflective paneling helps disguise just how low they are.”
    Looks like more lipstick on a pig with those really low ceilings, and I’m sort of shocked the new station will have them. Are the concourses of Grand Central low ceiling’d? (I’m asking, not being rhetorical here.)
    I still recall when the main concourse of the LIRR had the ceiling raised up. Sure it wasn’t Grand Central, but it just felt so much better. My brother said something like this to me, “All these years down here like rats, and they could have just raised the ceiling? Unbelievable.”

  2. daniel braun | June 23, 2017 at 1:37 pm |

    Wait a minute was this not supposed to look like the old Penn Station not modern piece of trash. I am thoroughly disappointed

  3. Wow, now all of LIRR’s Penn Station problems are solved! OK, not really, not at all. The bulk of what is Penn is between that new concourse and 7th Ave; when will LIRR give us decent entrances, a lot more escalators (faster, actually working), a decent lounge, bathrooms, quick food choices (oops, forgot LIRR hates that), opens trains and announces them a lot earlier, a proper separate homeless shelter, and far more. Let alone trains and tracks that actually work!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


*