Penn Station Redesign

By Stephanie Rebick | Posted on June 3rd, 2013

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Manhattan’s Penn Station has become something of an blight for the city, an example of urban decay and compromised security for the metropolis. The question of how to revive this station — which serves more than 300,000 people daily and is the busiest transportation hub in the US — continues to arise as the city seeks to rectify the situation. The latest proposals emerged from an invitation put forth by the not-for-profit Municipal Art Society, which asked a number of high profile architectural firms to reimagine a new Penn Station and Madison Square Garden complex better suited to serve the needs of the 21st century. Of the designs, I found those put forward by Diller Scofidio + Renfro — a complex network of levels, platforms and moving walkways — to be the most compelling; the design best captures the speed and intensity of contemporary travel. The New York-based firms design would see the station expanding skyward to accomodate new amenities like a rooftop garden, a spa and a theatre. This dramatic, futuristic design seems like the perfect architectural symbol for the gateway to the United States’ most important city.

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