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chris08876 Dec 9, 2013 12:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6367758)
Well, yeah. The actual reality of a cash-strapped Amtrak somehow acquiring and clearcutting a full 1.5 blocks of prime Midtown real estate, then constructing 14 new platform tracks on two levels? Ridiculous.

A new river tunnel is needed, and Gateway is a superior plan to ARC/THE because it links into the existing tracks at Penn. Anything past that is wasteful unless it adds new linkages (connection to Grand Central/ESA).

Couldn't the government intervene? This seems like it would be something that is voted in congress. Considering its the busiest rail station in the country. I'd imagine this would definitely be a infrastructure/transportation issue or priority.

vkristof Dec 9, 2013 2:11 AM

Couldn't the government intervene?!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chris08876 (Post 6367871)
Couldn't the government intervene? This seems like it would be something that is voted in congress. Considering its the busiest rail station in the country. I'd imagine this would definitely be a infrastructure/transportation issue or priority.

"Couldn't the [federal] government intervene?"

Are you making a joke??

For example, the text below is the 3rd search result returned by theGoogleMachine for federal+transportation+bill:

Bill would eliminate federal transportation funding | TheHill
thehill.com/.../transportation.../190402-bill-would-eliminate-federal-trans...‎
Nov 15, 2013 - A bill filed by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) would gradually eliminate federal funding of transportation projects.

vkristof Dec 9, 2013 2:27 AM

Refresh on current reality
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6367758)
Well, yeah. The actual reality of a cash-strapped Amtrak somehow acquiring and clearcutting a full 1.5 blocks of prime Midtown real estate, then constructing 14 new platform tracks on two levels? Ridiculous.

A new river tunnel is needed, and Gateway is a superior plan to ARC/THE because it links into the existing tracks at Penn. Anything past that is wasteful unless it adds new linkages (connection to Grand Central/ESA).

Yep.

And I point back to j-biz's post/photographic evidence from a few weeks ago as to what has been funded & is actually under construction right now and for the next 2+ years (completion in 2016:http://skyscraperpage.com/forum/show...&postcount=337

chris08876 Dec 9, 2013 11:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkristof (Post 6367915)
"Couldn't the [federal] government intervene?"

Are you making a joke??

For example, the text below is the 3rd search result returned by theGoogleMachine for federal+transportation+bill:

Bill would eliminate federal transportation funding | TheHill
thehill.com/.../transportation.../190402-bill-would-eliminate-federal-trans...‎
Nov 15, 2013 - A bill filed by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) would gradually eliminate federal funding of transportation projects.

No lol. Ah, I should of known. I keep thinking highly of our political officials to realize they are crap in the end. Why they decide to limit federal funding on something our nation lacks, better transportation; it is not logical. :(

vkristof Dec 9, 2013 1:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chris08876 (Post 6368173)
No lol. Ah, I should of known. I keep thinking highly of our political officials to realize they are crap in the end. Why they decide to limit federal funding on something our nation lacks, better transportation; it is not logical. :(

No, it isn't logical nor rational. Part of the problem is also limited cooperation between governmental agenices (fed, state & bi-state:PANYNJ) due to the protection of individual agency fiefdoms

The Amtrak tunnel box construction that is the enabler for the Hudson Yards overbuild platform (MTA air rights above the yard, Amtrak & MTA cooperating!) was kicked off by the NY pols using SS Sandy fed relief funds.

SS Sandy storm surge flooded the existing ~110 year old Hudson River tunnels by flowing into the Hudson/West Side yards and overwhelming the barriers that the MTA had built under the 10 th Ave viaduct. From there the storm surge flowed further down slope into the eastern tunnel portals under the AP bldg (450 W 33rd St)

mrnyc Dec 9, 2013 7:17 PM

^ interesting. you just knew the new subway station at the si ferry was going to get hammered during ss sandy, but i never thought about the hudson yards. anybody know what the storm damage cost estimate was there?

vkristof Dec 9, 2013 11:18 PM

SS fSandy flooded most of MTA West Side Yards
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mrnyc (Post 6368593)
^ interesting. you just knew the new subway station at the si ferry was going to get hammered during ss sandy, but i never thought about the hudson yards. anybody know what the storm damage cost estimate was there?

I dont' know the damage amount. The West Side Yards are MTA. Amtrak has shown a slide at presentations that shows that the storm surge (blue) flooded most of the actual rail rail yard (minus the North Tower overbuild facilities and most of the MoE facilities. Both the WSY & the west of the the Amtrak/Penn station tracks slope down to the North (Hudson) River Tunnels so they acted as a "drain" until, I assume, they filled up.
http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3711/1...c9de78c8_b.jpg
snip from Amtrak PDF dated 3/23/2013

NYguy Jan 9, 2014 1:49 PM

They've been doing studies on this, and have been showing plans to the community, but it now looks like this is going to happen.


http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/09/ny...the-bronx.html

Support for Metro-North Line in Bronx and to Penn Station


By MATT FLEGENHEIMER
JAN. 8, 2014

Quote:

A sweeping expansion of the Metro-North Railroad that would add four stations in the Bronx and connect the New Haven line to Pennsylvania Station has won the support of a significant ally: Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

Mr. Cuomo discussed the plan, a version of which has been studied for years by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and other transit planners, in his State of the State address on Wednesday. He called the project a way “to bring transit options to the Bronx.”

The new stations would be built in Co-op City, Morris Park, Parkchester and Hunts Point, drawing on a combination of new and existing tracks. But the proposal remains a long way from completion. The cost is expected to exceed $1 billion, according to an administration official, and Mr. Cuomo is seeking federal disaster recovery aid to pay for the bulk of the project.

Crossing over the East River on the Hell Gate Bridge, which carries Amtrak passenger trains and freight trains, the proposed expansion of the New Haven line would jut into Queens before its approach to Penn Station, the official said.

Amtrak declined to comment on Wednesday. Some lawmakers from Long Island have in the past expressed concerns about opening Penn Station, where the Long Island Rail Road ends its runs, to Metro-North.

One of the transportation authority’s biggest projects, expected to be completed in 2019, is its East Side Access plan to connect the Long Island Rail Road to Grand Central Terminal, which Metro-North now serves.

Mr. Cuomo’s comments were unequivocal: “We will open a new spur for Metro-North Railroad.”

http://static01.nyt.com/images/2014/...superJumbo.jpg



http://www.newsday.com/long-island/c...link-1.6760145

Cuomo backs Metro-North-Penn Station link

January 8, 2014
By ALFONSO A. CASTILLO AND YANCEY ROY


Quote:

Cuomo spokesman Matt Wing noted that Metro-North's connection to Penn would coincide with the LIRR linking to Metro-North's Grand Central in 2019 through the MTA's ongoing East Side Access project. "You will have more slots for Long Island, not less," Wing said.

Though on the MTA's to-do list for more than a dozen years, the project has gained momentum recently, in part because of support from key MTA decision-makers, including chairman Thomas Prendergast.

But the project has faced resistance on Long Island, including from eight state senators who have said they would not support the plan if it hurts the LIRR.

One of those lawmakers, Sen. Jack Martins (R-Mineola), reiterated his opposition to the project following Cuomo's endorsement. "The only way Metro-North can enter Penn Station is to displace LIRR trains to Penn Station," Martins said. "For the governor to put LIRR commuters at risk is a shame. We'll fight them on it."

An MTA spokesman declined to comment Wednesday.

The MTA has said it aims to run 10 Metro-North trains an hour on weekday mornings into Penn, which already houses the LIRR, Amtrak and New Jersey Transit. The LIRR runs 37 trains an hour into Penn during the morning rush.

drumz0rz Jan 9, 2014 5:08 PM

Are they going to bore 2 new tubes to Penn? Otherwise there will have to be cuts to LIRR service in order to accommodate these trains. It's currently a mad house at those east river tubes and they're definition running at or just around capacity during the morning / evening rush. The ESA plan for the LIRR dug new tubes and built a new terminal not disrupting the MNCR at all. It was never pitched to LIRR commuters or project supporters that it would result in a reduction of service to Penn. I feel like people with influence at the MNCR or looking for votes out of the Hudson Valley are pushing this plan without regard to those adversely affected.

vkristof Jan 9, 2014 6:09 PM

AFAIK, Penn & East River tubes are at or near capacity
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by drumz0rz (Post 6400021)
Are they going to bore 2 new tubes to Penn? Otherwise there will have to be cuts to LIRR service in order to accommodate these trains. It's currently a mad house at those east river tubes and they're definition running at or just around capacity during the morning / evening rush. The ESA plan for the LIRR dug new tubes and built a new terminal not disrupting the MNCR at all. It was never pitched to LIRR commuters or project supporters that it would result in a reduction of service to Penn. I feel like people with influence at the MNCR or looking for votes out of the Hudson Valley are pushing this plan without regard to those adversely affected.

No they will NOT bore 2 new tubes to Penn from Long Island in the next 20 years. Two new tubes from New Jersey to Penn, the Amtrak Gateway tunnels, maybe.

AFAIK, Penn and/or the century+ old East River tubes river tubes are at or near capacity.
By definition, if nothing changes at Penn or the tubes, LIRR service to Penn would have to be cut to allow slots for the new MNR service. There is ongoing work for an Amtrak Harold Interlocking bypass in the Sunnyside Yards (Queens) area but I have no idea if this would allow more trains through the East River tubes

BUT, many LIRR riders to Penn will switch to become LIRR riders to GCT, so it will significantly reduce the human congestion at Penn during rush hours.
The resulting ability to REDUCE LIRR train frequency to Penn and allow MN access will have to be fought out politically.

I am for greater connectivity in the NYC region so I am for this project. Note that I live near the easternmost electric LIRR station. Having an east Bronx to Penn rail connection would also be useful for workers commuting to jobs in the upcoming Hudson Yards area developments.

I am also for the 3rd LIRR track through Nassau County (needed to handle both Penn & ESA/GCT), which is also being opposed by local LI politicians.

NIMBYism is very dangerous in the NYC area.

ardecila Jan 9, 2014 7:34 PM

LIRR riders will get better options, not worse. Those headed to the West Side will have fewer trains to choose from, but those headed to the East Side will now have numerous trains providing direct service to Grand Central and eliminating their subway/taxi transfer or long walk.

This is a win-win, really. Too bad Long Islanders don't see it.

Does anyone know if Metro-North is considering a through-routing of the Hudson and New Haven Lines using the Empire Connection and the Hell Gate Branch? That could provide a lot of operational flexibility if the tracks line up at Penn. It should be easier to implement since both ends are in MNRR territory.

vkristof Jan 9, 2014 8:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ardecila (Post 6400281)
LIRR riders will get better options, not worse. Those headed to the West Side will have fewer trains to choose from, but those headed to the East Side will now have numerous trains providing direct service to Grand Central and eliminating their subway/taxi transfer or long walk.

This is a win-win, really. Too bad Long Islanders don't see it.

Does anyone know if Metro-North is considering a through-routing of the Hudson and New Haven Lines using the Empire Connection and the Hell Gate Branch? That could provide a lot of operational flexibility if the tracks line up at Penn. It should be easier to implement since both ends are in MNRR territory.

This is a win-win, really. Too bad Long Islanders don't see it. This really should be SOME LIers (& their local pols) don't see it.

Does anyone know if Metro-North is considering a through-routing of the Hudson and New Haven Lines using the Empire Connection and the Hell Gate Branch? Not that I know of. But I suggest you check out the comments in the secondavenuesagas blog entry for the MNR-Penn project:

http://secondavenuesagas.com/2014/01...rges/#comments

WestSideGuy Jan 9, 2014 8:29 PM

Being a former Long Islander, but still a Long Islander at heart, I know exactly the issue the politicians have. When it was decided to have the LIRR come to Grand Central, you didn't see Westchester or CT politicians open to giving up track slots for the LIRR. The LIRR had to have a terminal deep, deep underground to join Grand Central.

Now MNR will be coming into Penn, but not building it's own terminal, but wanting LIRR to give up slots. Long Island wants to increase capacity, not just move some from Penn Station to Grand Central.

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkristof (Post 6400368)
This is a win-win, really. Too bad Long Islanders don't see it. This really should be SOME LIers (& their local pols) don't see it.

Does anyone know if Metro-North is considering a through-routing of the Hudson and New Haven Lines using the Empire Connection and the Hell Gate Branch? Not that I know of. But I suggest you check out the comments in the secondavenuesagas blog entry for the MNR-Penn project:

http://secondavenuesagas.com/2014/01...rges/#comments


vkristof Jan 9, 2014 8:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WestSideGuy (Post 6400382)
Being a former Long Islander, but still a Long Islander at heart, I know exactly the issue the politicians have. When it was decided to have the LIRR come to Grand Central, you didn't see Westchester or CT politicians open to giving up track slots for the LIRR. The LIRR had to have a terminal deep, deep underground to join Grand Central.

Now MNR will be coming into Penn, but not building it's own terminal, but wanting LIRR to give up slots. Long Island wants to increase capacity, not just move some from Penn Station to Grand Central.

We have limited resources (land, $$s, political will, etc) and at the moment we have a many year overdue, way overbudget, ESA project. This is VERY typical of any large infrastructure project in the NYC area.

We have what we have (hopefully before the 2020s...) I'm happy that "we" can accomplish anything major at all.

I'll merely repeat the ardecila comment:

Quote:

LIRR riders will get better options, not worse. Those headed to the West Side will have fewer trains to choose from, but those headed to the East Side will now have numerous trains providing direct service to Grand Central and eliminating their subway/taxi transfer or long walk.

AND this secondavenuesagas entry: http://secondavenuesagas.com/2013/05...tation-access/


And who knows, MAYBE we'll get the Gateway tunnels connected to NY Penn sometime in the 2020s.

NYguy Jan 9, 2014 11:03 PM

It's ridiculous for anyone from Long Island to be complaining about Metro-North coming into Penn, when Long Island will have the option of having trains going to both Penn and Grand Central. And the Metro-North spur into Penn will also provide direct rail service into Manhattan for people in the City who don't really have it. Co-Op City has wanted and needed a direct line for years. There will be enough trains diverted into Grand Central to offset any problems. Perhaps the MTA should have merged both rail lines as has been talked about before. There would be no issue.

NYguy Feb 16, 2014 1:12 PM

I didn't know this was in the making, but it should be a very good watch...


http://mas.org/the-history-of-penn-s...s-documentary/


The History of Penn Station Highlighted in New PBS Documentary

February 11th, 2014


Quote:

On February 18th, PBS will premiere The Rise and Fall of Penn Station, part of the American Experience series. The documentary presents an engrossing look at the monumental feats of engineering 100 years ago that led to the construction of the tunnels, tracks and station house that made up the original Penn Station. Tonight, the Museum of the City of New York is hosting a special screening of the film with filmmaker Randall MacLowry; executive producer Mark Samels; Lorraine Diehl, author of The Late, Great Pennsylvania Station; and historian Jill Jonnes, author of Conquering Gotham. Click through to watch a preview.

Video Link



A longer, 8 minute clip below...

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexpe...s/penn/player/

aquablue Feb 27, 2014 5:11 AM

Penn Station is atrocious. Last time I was there, a pigeon was pooping on people in the amtrak waiting areas. I think waiting 10 years is just ridiculous to see the thing gone. NYC deserves something at least somewhat salubrious.

aquablue Feb 27, 2014 5:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkristof (Post 6400437)
We have limited resources (land, $$s, political will, etc) and at the moment we have a many year overdue, way overbudget, ESA project. This is VERY typical of any large infrastructure project in the NYC area.

We have what we have (hopefully before the 2020s...) I'm happy that "we" can accomplish anything major at all.

I'll merely repeat the ardecila comment:




AND this secondavenuesagas entry: http://secondavenuesagas.com/2013/05...tation-access/


And who knows, MAYBE we'll get the Gateway tunnels connected to NY Penn sometime in the 2020s.

What a shame that there is no political will to give the legendary city a first world transit system in a first world time-frame. Aren't we in the first world? London is racing ahead, and NYC is being left in the dust in terms of transit and infrastructure. I guess nobody cares about keeping up with the Jones' in good ol' NYC or America for that matter. The majority of people in office in this country must want NYC to look like Lagos on Hudson by the way most of middle america seems to hate NYC

NYguy Mar 3, 2014 4:42 PM

http://therealdeal.com/blog/2014/03/...-station-plan/

New York state ready to move on Penn Station plan
Farley post office would serve as Amtrak waiting room


March 03, 2014


Quote:

State officials are seeking a broker to help sell 1.5 million square feet of unused development rights as part of renewed plans to expand New York Penn Station into the James A. Farley post office building.

The request for proposals, posted last month on the website of the Empire State Development Corporation, indicates the state’s eagerness to proceed. The post office, at 421 Eighth Avenue, would serve as a waiting room for Amtrak passengers.

j-biz Mar 3, 2014 6:32 PM

^ There's a WSJ article that fleshes it out in slightly more detail: New York State Pushes for Penn Station Plan

The article raised the question as to who would buy these air rights. Do you think it's possible that Brookfield or Related would be interested?

Also found some really great pictures of the currently empty post office space. Such a shame this is all going to waste. All photos from Scouting NY:

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4148/5...58c4b94d_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4087/5...12ab4488_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4144/5...10a71821_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4145/5...4c67bd14_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4089/5...7c7c4af9_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4130/5...88a0f122_b.jpg

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4106/5...3125c7cd_b.jpg


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