Empire State Development Signs Final Financial Agreement with Related Companies, Vornado Realty LP, and Skanska USA Allowing Major Construction to Begin
Construction Moves Forward on Moynihan Train Hall and Redevelopment of James A. Farley Building
Housing Both Amtrak and LIRR Ticketing and Waiting Areas
New Renderings of New Penn-Farley Complex Available Here
Audio of the Governor’s Announcement Available Here
New York –- (RealEstateRama) — Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a final deal closed on the redevelopment of the Penn-Farley Complex allowing for major construction to begin after decades of delays. The final financial agreement between Empire State Development and Related Companies, Vornado Realty LP, and Skanska USA secures the transformation of the historic James A Farley Post Office building into a world-class transportation hub for the 21st century. The Farley Building redevelopment into the Moynihan Train Hall will create a new 255,000 square foot Train Hall for Long Island Railroad and Amtrak passengers and increase Penn Station’s total concourse floor space by more than 50 percent. New renderings of the new Penn-Farley Complex are available here. The Farley Building will also house 700,000 square feet of new commercial, retail and dining space within the mixed-use facility and create an iconic civic space for Manhattan’s West Side. This will result in the creation of thousands of new construction and permanent jobs and like Grand Central Terminal, the building will become a vibrant destination in its own right, and a vital amenity for the neighborhood.
“Fifty years after the loss of the original Penn Station structure, passengers will once again experience a world-class rail hub worthy of New York,” Governor Cuomo said. “The Farley Building’s Moynihan Train Hall is two decades in the making, and we are proud that this project is finally a reality. With better access to trains and subways and state-of-the-art infrastructure, the Moynihan Train Hall seamlessly joins history, architectural design and function, bringing the nation’s busiest rail station into the 21st century.”
The $1.6 billion project is being funded with $550 million from the state, $420 million from Amtrak, the MTA, the Port Authority and federal grants, and $630 million from the joint venture developers.
The Farley Building was designed by McKim, Mead and White as a sister to their masterpiece–the original Penn Station. Five decades after the loss of the original structure, the Moynihan Train Hall will once again provide New Yorkers a grand entrance in a McKim, Mead and White architectural marvel. The Farley Building’s train hall will bear the name of one of its great champions—the late Senator Patrick Moynihan.
The Farley Building’s Moynihan Train Hall will feature a new spectacular 92-foot high skylight to be built above the building’s historic and architecturally-dramatic steel trusses. A total of nine platforms and 17 tracks will be accessible from the Train Hall. The Train Hall will provide direct connections to the Eighth Avenue Subway, and create direct access to the train station from 9th Avenue for the first time, bringing unparalleled regional transportation options within convenient reach of the booming Hudson Yards and Far West Side areas.
The Moynihan Train Hall is part of the transformational Pennsylvania Station-Farley Complex announced by Governor Cuomo in September 2016 to dramatically modernize, upgrade and redesign America’s busiest transit hub into a world-class facility for the 21st century. The Pennsylvania Station-Farley Complex also includes a comprehensive redesign of the LIRR’s existing 33rd Street concourse at Penn Station and an extensive renovation to the adjacent Seventh and Eighth Avenue subway stations. 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 include upgraded lighting and wayfinding, and digital screens to convey information and create a modern passenger experience.
The new Train Hall is scheduled to be complete by the end of 2020.
Senator Charles E. Schumer said, “This agreement is a giant step forward in the creation of a grand new Moynihan Station for Amtrak and LIRR riders and the booming growth of the Hudson Yards and formerly fallow Far West Side. I am proud to have helped deliver critical federal resources that paved the way for Moynihan Station and enabled Amtrak to contribute to this critical transportation hub, and I applaud Governor Cuomo for New York’s investment and his lead role in pushing this deal with partners Vornado, Related Companies and Skanska past the finish line. LIRR and Amtrak commuters are going to love the new grand train hall, the significant increase in concourse space and the coming improvements to the brutally overcrowded 33rd Street corridors. In addition, completion of this project will take tremendous pressure off of the overcrowded Penn Station complex, and visitors and community residents alike are going to love the destination food and shopping and grandeur of the entire complex.”
Congressman José E. Serrano said, “Today, we are turning the page on decades of delays and unmet promises to build the Penn Farley complex. Thanks to the determination of Governor Cuomo, New York is moving forward with its ambitious plans to turn the James A. Farley Post Office into a beautiful train hall. The new train hall will greatly expand the size of the concourse at Penn Station and serve as a hub for travelers and businesses alike, creating a train station that New Yorkers can be proud of.”
Congressman Jerrold Nadler said, “Decades of neglect created an eyesore at Penn Station – what’s worse, its dilapidation has resulted in unbearable conditions for those who travel through its corridors. Now, thanks to Governor’s Cuomo’s unrelenting commitment and visionary approach to New York’s infrastructure, we are moving full-speed ahead to transform Penn. This is celebratory news for all New Yorkers, and I congratulate the Governor and all of those involved for this huge step in the right direction.”
Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney said, “I am pleased that a deal has finally been reached on Penn-Farley, and that the project can now move forward. Anyone who travels through Penn Station knows how congested and frustrating making your way through the existing station can be. With this redevelopment customers will see a significant improvement in their daily commutes, and all will benefit from an increase in space.”
Senator Brad Hoylman said, “The Farley Building’s Moynihan Train Hall is decades in the making, and I am thrilled that now the heart of New York’s transit system will get the transformation it desperately needs and deserves. It is abundantly clear that New Yorkers – and visitors alike – have been waiting for this moment for years, and thanks to Governor Cuomo’s vision, it is getting done. I thank the Governor and all of those involved for ensuring this historic achievement comes to fruition.”
Assemblymember Richard Gottfried said, “The Penn Station-Farley project has been a long time coming. Working out concepts and getting multiple public and private parties to agree has not been easy. I applaud Governor Cuomo for getting the project ‘on track’ and going forward.”
Council Member Corey Johnson said, “New York City is the greatest metropolis in the world, but its central transit hub – Penn Station – has been an embarrassment. After decades of dilapidation, we have reached a major breakthrough in Penn’s transformation. Under the Governor’s leadership, we are moving forward on Penn – but even beyond Penn, this milestone will have a momentous affect across the northeast region’s transit system.”
MTA Interim Executive Director Ronnie Hakim said, “Our riders have long yearned for train hall that is as functional as it is beautiful and this new design offers them both. LIRR riders will enjoy better amenities and a station that is easy to navigate – two critical components for their daily commute. I commend the Governor and our private partners for realizing these improvements couldn’t wait any longer and for turning decades of promised improvements into a reality.”
Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “Today is a significant milestone in our efforts to transform the historic James A. Farley Building into a transit hub for the 21st century. With major construction moving forward on the Moynihan Train Hall, we are closer than ever before to achieving a dream decades in the making. The Penn-Farley Complex will be the world-class station New Yorkers deserve and Empire State Development is proud to support the Governor’s vision.”
Amtrak Board of Directors Chairman Tony Coscia said, “The Moynihan Train Hall is part of our multifaceted effort to improve the Northeast Corridor in New York City. The new Train Hall, funded in part by a $105 million contribution from Amtrak, will provide a modern new departure concourse for Amtrak passengers, including a new boarding and waiting areas with integrated ticketing and baggage handling and a new ClubAcela. We appreciate Governor Cuomo’s leadership in bringing this long-planned improvement to completion and his ongoing support for the Gateway Program, as this is the first step towards creating the customer experience, capacity, and reliability that Gateway will deliver to support the long-term growth of rail service at Penn Station.”
Anders Danielsson, Skanska USA President and CEO, said, “Skanska is grateful for the opportunity to deepen our history of partnership with the State of New York to modernize and expand our transportation infrastructure. We are also proud to partner with Related and Vornado, who have brought together their world-class development teams with our heavy civil and construction management expertise to meet this unique challenge.”
Jeff Blau, CEO of Related Companies on behalf of the joint venture said, “Today represents a great milestone for the re-imagination of the Farley Post Office as the Moynihan Train Hall. We are grateful for the Governor’s leadership and the partnership of the State of New York, Long Island Rail Road and Amtrak. The Moynihan Train Hall, and the redevelopment of the rest of the building, will continue the dynamic transformation of the west side and offer unique, large-floorplate class A office space in a historic New York location with unrivaled access to transportation and vibrant retail amenities.”
In January 2016, Empire State Development, the MTA, LIRR and Amtrak issued an RFP soliciting proposals for the comprehensive redevelopment of the century-old, landmarked Farley Building, including a Train Hall and the surrounding office and retail space. RFP responses were received in April 2016 and reviewed by a panel of private and public experts from the real estate, construction, design and finance fields.
In September 2016, the Governor announced the selection of a developer-builder team including three companies, Related Companies, Vornado Realty LP, and Skanska USA, to redevelop the Farley Building. Empire State Development and the joint-venture reached financial close on the transaction today.
Governor Cuomo is investing $100 billion in infrastructure projects across New York to promote economic development, create jobs, and expand opportunity. These investments enable New York to rebuild and modernize its roads, bridges, broadband networks, public buildings, and other critical infrastructure across the State while putting thousands of New Yorkers to work. Governor Cuomo has jumpstarted long-stalled or long-overdue projects, such as the Tappan Zee Bridge, the transformation of LaGuardia and JFK Airports, the Jacob K. Javits Center expansion, and building a new Penn Station.
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