Station’s busiest entrance opens in time for holiday travel with new accessibility options
NEW YORK – Amtrak and Vornado Realty Trust today marked the completed transformation of New York Penn Station’s busiest entrance at 7th Avenue and 32nd Street. The enlarged and fully rebuilt entrance expands its width by 50 percent at the nation’s busiest train station, provides natural light and air down into the concourse, and features a fully ADA-accessible and safer experience. See stunning photos of the new entrance here (credit: Fernando Sandoval/MW).
“We are proud to roll out the welcome mat to our new, modern entrance for the 600,000 daily New York Penn Station visitors,” said Amtrak CEO Stephen Gardner. “Having a direct, accessible entrance at 32nd and 7th will improve the customer experience for all passengers as they can now take an elevator, walk down wider stairs and have an added, third escalator to help them enter or exit the station.”
“Together, we have reimagined and transformed one of the world’s busiest transit entrances. Our collaborative effort with Amtrak has delivered something every New Yorker and every visitor to our city deserves. The new entrance is safer, more accessible, more spacious and far more inviting for the hundreds of thousands of people who travel through Penn Station every day. Intentionally and systematically, we are transforming the PENN DISTRICT into the new epicenter of Manhattan – a remarkable place to live, work, and experience the best that New York has to offer,” said Steven Roth, CEO of Vornado Realty Trust.
“A world-class transit hub deserves a world-class entrance, and now, thanks to the partnership of Vornado Realty Trust and Amtrak, Penn Station’s 600,000 daily visitors will have a new, fully ADA accessible gateway to New York,” said Congressman Jerrold Nadler. “With the holiday season upon us, there is no better time for today’s announcement as millions will travel to New York to take advantage of all our city has to offer. Innovative public-private partnerships like this are crucial for improving our nation’s infrastructure, and I will continue to work to secure federal funding for critical infrastructure projects throughout our great city.”
The completely renovated entrance features:
- New elevator: A new ADA-compliant elevator makes this busy entrance used by NJ TRANSIT, Long Island Rail Road and Amtrak passengers fully accessible and improves the customer experience for those carrying heavy luggage.
- More escalators: Three new transit-grade escalators replaced the entrance’s two original escalators, connecting passengers with the station’s mezzanine level.
- Wider sidewalks: Working with the NYC Department of Transportation, Vornado is significantly widening the sidewalks along the west side of Seventh Avenue between West 31st and 33rd Streets to relieve crowding and improve safety and navigation.
- Light-filled canopy: The entrance’s 1967-era concrete overhang has been replaced with a new glass canopy that allows natural light into the station below.
- Visibility from Park Avenue and points east: Monumental illuminated Penn Station signage allows travelers to easily locate one of the station’s main entrances.
Over the last five years, Amtrak has made more than $300 million in capital improvement investments at New York Penn Station, in addition to its investment in Moynihan Train Hall. In FY23, Amtrak dedicated more than $114 million to its ADA Stations Program, which has now brought 118 stations around the nation to full compliance and another 65 to compliance excluding platforms, which require additional work.
The 7th Avenue and 32nd Street Entrance project was a true public-private partnership, with Vornado leading the overall design and constructing street-level improvements and the canopy above, while Amtrak constructed the improvements from the street to its concourse including the new ADA elevator. The transformation was enabled by Vornado’s redevelopment of its PENN 2 office tower and the adjacent public spaces between West 31st and West 33rd Street along Seventh Avenue.
Pritzker Prize-winning architect Lord Norman Foster’s firm, Foster + Partners, designed the dramatic new glass canopy and interior lighting feature, which creates a more inviting, open, and brighter environment linking the station below to the street. Above the canopy, perched 50 feet above the plaza on the underside of the monumental “Bustle” of PENN 2, is a massive new LED lighting installation developed by Vornado, providing an opportunity for art, and ensuring a sense of place and civic monumentality.
Nigel Dancey, Head of Studio, Foster + Partners, said, “We have been master-planning, studying and improving New York City’s public realm with Vornado to create a more inclusive and dynamic urban experience. This project is an important step towards a wider transformation that looks to enhance the quality of the spaces between buildings and make the busiest transportation hub in North America welcoming and inviting for all.”
For more than 50 years, Amtrak has connected America and modernized train travel. Offering a safe, environmentally efficient way to reach more than 500 destinations across 46 states and parts of Canada, Amtrak provides travelers with an experience that sets a new standard. Book travel, check train status, access your eTicket and more through the Amtrak app. Learn more at Amtrak.com and connect with us on X, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.
About Vornado Realty Trust
Vornado is a fully integrated real estate investment trust (“REIT”) with a portfolio of premier New York City office and retail assets and the developer of the new PENN DISTRICT. While concentrated in New York, Vornado also owns the premier assets in both Chicago and San Francisco. Vornado is a real estate industry leader in sustainability, with over 27 million square feet of LEED-certified buildings and over 23 million square feet at LEED Gold or Platinum. Improvements like the new entrance to Penn Station are part of Vornado’s multi-billion investment to improve the PENN DISTRICT and its assets within it.
contact_name Jason Abrams
contact_title Amtrak Media Relations
contact_phone 202 906.3860
contact_name Wiley Norvell
contact_title Vornado Realty Trust