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Massive Penn Station Expansion Set To Begin By Mid-2012

Moynihan West End Concourse (Photo Credit: Moynihan Station Development Corp.)

Moynihan West End Concourse (Photo Credit: Moynihan Station Development Corp.)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) –  After years of starts, stops and half-starts, the long-delayed expansion of New York’s Penn Station is set to begin.

WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell reports

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced Tuesday the $270 million first phase of the project that includes expanded concourses and extra entryways on the western end of the station. The adjacent James Farley post office will also become a new passenger facility.

The new terminal will be named after late U.S. Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who championed the project beginning in the 1990s.

Port Authority executive director Patrick Foye says NJ TRANSIT riders who now have to walk nearly two crosstown blocks underground will be able to get into the station or above ground quicker.

“It’s going to involve doubling the length and width of the concourse,” Foye told WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell.

The second phase will turn the basement of the post office into Amtrak’s new terminal.

“Part of this is separating the two types of travelers so that they’re less in each other’s way and we’re able to route passengers for all services in a more efficient and friendly manner,” Amtrak Vice President for the Northeast Corridor Infrastructure & Investment Development Stephen Gardner told 1010 WINS.

Work is scheduled to start by the middle of 2012 and be finished in 2016.

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(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)