MTA marks new chapter with grand opening of Penn Station expansion

NEW YORK (WABC) -- For the MTA, the new year started off with the grand opening of the $1.6 billion Moynihan Train Hall.

This week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and transit officials cut the ribbon on the gleaming new train hub.

The Moynihan Train Hall is part of the repurposing of the old Farley Post Office building, once New York's main postal center, which connects to Penn Station under Eighth Avenue.

It's named after late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who pushed for the project in the 1990s.

"It's glorious it's spectacular I knew Senator Moynihan and this is very emotional for me personally to see this. I knew how much this meant to him," Long Island resident Paul Moravec said.

Cuomo called the project "an extraordinary accomplishment" that began construction in 2017 and finished during the COVID-19 pandemic,a feat in itself.

Amtrak will move its baggage area, ticket offices, and ticketed waiting area there, and the Long Island Rail Road will use the 255,000-square-foot space as well.

The effect will be to reduce crowding at Penn Station and offer a striking contrast to that facility's dingy, windowless expanse.

"I think it's beautiful. I can't believe it took almost 30 years for this to happen, but then again I guess I can believe it," New York City resident Jonathan Doucette said.

Harlem train lover Anthony Molina used it to start his new life, asking his partner to marry him.

"I really like trains so it's the perfect full circle moment. Our first date was on the holiday train that the MTA runs. So, new station, new us," Molina said.

----------
* Get Eyewitness News Delivered
* More New York City news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
* Follow us on YouTube
Submit a News Tip
Copyright © 2021 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.