Penn Station Redesign
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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