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New Moynihan (Penn) station hall


cteno4

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Sorry thought I had posted on this but guess I didn’t. 
 

so last Halloween I was up in NYC for a couple of days (took some friends up to see David byrne’s American Utopia—that was absolutely spectacular) and got to visit the new Moynihan hall across the street from the old Penn station below Madison Square gardens. I had very high hopes seeing artist renderings then finally photos as it neared completion and opened a year ago. It’s built with in the facade of the old main post office building that is very classic look and design outwardly. Inside the main hall had a giant skylight roof and metal trusses to remove columns from the main hall like grand central terminal. Other elements like sloped ramps and wide corridors are used from grand central. Eventually it is to access to bit Amtrak and lirr. But still confusing which hall Penn or Moynihan to use for which train and some can be accessed by both. 
 

there is a huge BUT though. In the main open hall with the huge skylight roof, there are 4 enormous led screens along each side of the hall. They are enormous and so bright at times (I guess to overpower all the direct sunlight from the glass roof) that it overpowers the whole hall. Some are ads, some are just public service things and a very few sort of art. But all are completely overpowering and completely ruin the hall. You can’t look anywhere to look away it’s so in your face. Grand Central Terminal main hall is like a cathedral to trains and you can just stand there and take in the huge dome ceiling and even though it can be super frenetic with folks coming and going (mainly commuters so on speed missions) it’s still really peaceful and the noise is muffled in this very pleasing way. Moynihan is the exact opposite in all these aspects. The screens make it so you just want to run out of the hall to the street or to a platform. Sound as well is quite loud and I was there in covid times where there were few people. No one stops in the hall at all unlike grand central. Very sad as here 2 months later I can not bring back any visual memories of details like the trusses and glass roof and such as the led screens obliterated them all from my memory! It’s like when I go ther in my head I have this bright and hot feeling like putting your eyeball right up to a bright video monitor.

 

just sad, I had high hopes we would have a new stellar train hall and all that can be ruined by massive led screens. It was so unnecessary as they could have been something interesting there or at worst just have some more subtle and stationary art on the massive screens, not obnoxious flash flash flash video that blinds you. Makes me very depressed about our culture and it’s effect on design.

 

[sigh]

 

jeff

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bikkuri bahn

Interesting criticism of the train hall:

Between Gods and Rats, the Moynihan Train Hall Is a Temple to Modern Mediocrity

The new public space in midtown Manhattan is supposed to atone for tearing down the original Penn Station. It does nothing of the sort.

By Aaron Gordon

https://www.vice.com/en/article/3an5b9/between-gods-and-rats-the-moynihan-train-hall-is-a-temple-to-modern-mediocrity

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Yeah that about it, but compared to the current Penn station (basically a rat Warren) it’s a big leap forward, but is not even in the league with Penn Philly or dc Union station halls and not in the same universe as grand central. But those video wall destroy anything mediocre the hall may have done! It’s like the post apocalyptic modern just slap a Jumbotron on it!
 

jeff

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disturbman

There is nothing worst than LED billboards, they are so violently luminous. It's a really stupid idea to put them inside a relatively small enclosed space. They might not stay long if there is enough complaints, and maybe a Twitter mob type outburst.

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