Working with the LIRR, the winning firm will have six months to put the finishing touches on a design-build plan that will allow a general contractor to begin work in 2017.
The MTA and the LIRR will announce the winning design firm before the end of the year.
“This marks another major step in Governor’s Cuomo’s transformational plan to reimagine Penn Station and to change the experience for everyone using Long Island Rail Road,” said MTA Chairman & CEO Thomas F. Prendergast.
The redesign of the LIRR portions of Penn Station aim to improve passenger experience and circulation. The plan will include nearly tripling the width of the 33rd Street Corridor, which is among the busiest sections of Penn Station and stretches along the station’s lower level from Seventh to Eighth Avenue. Other improvements will include upgraded lighting and wayfinding and digital screens to convey information.
The majority of the corridor improvements will be completed simultaneous to the Train Hall’s opening, with other elements completed sooner. Construction of the new LIRR corridor will cost an estimated $170 million. The transformational redesign also includes upgrading the two subway stations at Penn Station. Many of these improvements to subway stations on Seventh and Eighth Avenues are expected as early as 2018.
More than 500,000 visitors pass through Penn Station each day, most as commuters or travelers on the LIRR, New York City Subway, Amtrak, and NJ Transit.
In September, Governor Cuomo outlined his public-private partnership to turn Penn Station into a world class transportation hub, opening up the LIRR complex and turning the Farley Building into a sun-drenched train hall with a balcony of retail stores as an important element in the revitalized complex. The Farley would be topped by a new transparent glass roof, but its classic Beaux-Arts exterior, very much reminiscent of the original Penn Station, would be retained.
The Governor also announced the selection of a developer-builder team including three companies, Related Companies, Vornado Realty LP, and Skanska AB to redevelop the Farley Building, creating a new 255,000 square foot Train Hall to house passenger facilities for the Long Island Rail Road and Amtrak. The entire project would be completed by December 2020.