Critics of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plans for the James A. Farley Post Office and Penn Station say they are a step in the right direction but don’t go far enough.
The Municipal Art Society and the Regional Plan Association, both seasoned critics of design plans for the buildings, released a statement on Monday calling on officials to tackle a more ambitious project, Politico reported. The groups’ claim that while the governor’s plans address some of the “most visible deficiencies” of Penn Station like low ceilings and rundown public spaces, they don’t think those solutions are long-term. The groups urged Cuomo to develop a plan for the complete redevelopment of Penn Station and reiterated their long-held belief that Madison Square Garden should be relocated to do so.
“In order to provide capacity for future growth and unlock the economic development potential of our region, much more needs to be done by all the partners with a stake in our future,” the groups said in a joint statement. “We call on all interest groups and decision makers — both public and private — to advance ideas that address long-term concerns while these new measures are being implemented.”
On Friday, architect Vishaan Chakrabarti revealed a hypothetical alternative design for Penn Station in the New York Times, one that would require the relocation of MSG. In his announcement last week, Cuomo said there are no plans to move the arena.
At the time, Cuomo announced that Related, Vornado and Skanska were the preferred bidders for the redevelopment of Farley, which will feature 700,000 square feet of office and retail space and train halls for both Amtrak and the Long Island Rail Road. Meanwhile in Penn Station, the LIRR concourse at 33rd Street will be widened and decked out with LED video screens projecting blue skies. [Politico] — Kathryn Brenzel